'Hidden' App Tracks Laptop Thieves Around the World

Dennis Faas's picture

Back in February 2013, Dom Del Torto's MacBook was stolen from his London, England, apartment. In an effort to get it back, in March Del Torto began using the tracking software he'd previously installed on the device. The results were shocking.

Using the tracking program 'Hidden', Del Torto found that the laptop had in just one month's time travelled all the way from London to Tehran, Iran.

Laptop Outside UK Police Jurisdiction

Because the Hidden app allows a user to take pictures of the person using the device on which it's installed, Del Torto was able to see the laptop's new owners. He was also able to track their online activity.

Unfortunately for Del Torto, British police said there wasn't much they could do. With the laptop half a world away, the case had now gone far beyond their jurisdiction. (Source: gizmodo.com)

And so, Del Torto simply watched in agony (and some fascination) as his laptop's new owners used the device to play games, chat with friends, and listen to music. Of course, they had no idea that someone was using Hidden to watch all of this.

New Owners Shocked by Blog

Frustrated with the response of British police, Del Torto posted the images online. Understandably, his story caused quite the stir, and eventually made its way to the Iranians who he had been tracking.

And they were none too pleased. The new owners of Del Torto's laptop claimed they had no idea it was stolen and were shocked to find images of themselves posted online.

They then reached out to Del Torto to explain their side of the story.

In response, last week Del Torto posted this note to his blog:

"The innocent new owners of my laptop have been in touch and are mortified about the story and are keen to return the laptop. Given the huge error of judgement on my part in sharing the story and failing to respect their privacy I have asked them to keep it by means of an apology." (Source: huffingtonpost.com)

It remains unclear who stole Del Torto's laptop or how it made its way from London to Iran.

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