Controlling or locating your mobile device remotely is a huge deal right now. With all the information our smartphones carry these days, and with the possibility of seeing these devices one day become our preferred method of payment, there will soon be a lot of sensitive information on our phones. This may sound like the user is asking for trouble, but it may actually be quite safer than a regular wallet because of technology such as what is described in these three patent applications filed by Apple.
Here are the descriptions, all of which are called "Remotely locating and commanding a Mobile Device".
United States Patent Application 20100279675:
Methods, systems, and apparatus are presented for processing a remote lock command message. In one aspect, a method includes receiving, by a mobile device, a remote lock command message comprising a lock command and specifying a passcode to be set by the mobile device, locking the mobile device in response to the received remote lock command message, setting an unlock passcode associated with the mobile device to the specified passcode, and generating an acknowledgement message in response to the remote lock command message. Further, receiving the remote lock command message can include accessing a subscribed topic hosted on a notification service, the subscribed topic being associated with a lock command, and retrieving the remote lock command message from the subscribed topic. Additionally, locking the mobile device can include locking a display such that access to information stored on the mobile device and device functionality are blocked.
Methods and systems are presented for remotely commanding a mobile device. In one aspect, a method includes receiving input identifying a mobile device, presenting to a user one or more remote commands corresponding to the mobile device, receiving user input selecting a remote command from the one or more presented remote commands, generating a remote command message instructing the mobile device to execute the selected remote command, and transmitting the remote command message to a server for publication in a message topic. Further, a selectable list of mobile devices associated with a remote management account can be presented to the user, the selectable list including information uniquely identifying each mobile device. Additionally, the selectable list of mobile devices can include an indication of whether an included mobile device is online.
United States Patent Application 20100279652:
Methods, systems, and apparatus are presented for processing a remote command message. In one aspect, a method includes accessing a subscribed topic hosted on a notification service, the subscribed topic corresponding to a mobile device, retrieving a remote command message included in the subscribed topic that identifies a command to be executed by the mobile device, determining whether the command can be executed by the mobile device, publishing a result message associated with the command, and executing, by the mobile device, the command based on the determining. Publishing the result message further can include identifying in the remote command message a result topic corresponding to the notification service and publishing the result message to the identified result topic. Additionally, the subscribed topic can be uniquely associated with the mobile device.
Losing any personal item is a cause for worry. The best thing we can do is have a way to shut down the device or brick it if it's lost. Especially when it may carry valuable information.