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Stolen Android Phone Turns Into Internet Sensation Thanks to Cerberus and Play-by-Play Police Arrest

stolen phone

Thanks to the internet, that seems to always win the day, I just spent far too long in one of the most hilarious and entertaining forum threads of all time over at Overclockers. The story goes something like this – man has Android phone stolen, thankfully has Cerberus Security installed, proceeds to snap photos/video/audio recordings of the thief, informs police multiple times, police eventually arrive at thief’s house a day later, knock on door, thief hides, they enter, find phone, and return it to owner. But what’s so brilliant about the entire situation, is the 60+ page forum thread that goes along with it. 

Thanks to Cerberus and forum members who provided ample tips, the victim in this situation was able to snap photos of the thief, whom was eventually dubbed “Moley” thanks to his stand-out mole situation. There are videos of him having conversations with friends, jokes about his pink wallpaper, records of his phone number and SIM swapping, and the eventual police door breakdown. Well, we’re not sure it included a door kick-in, but the play-by-play of the events going down up until the arrest are so worth your time.

At one point (towards page 37), the police arrived to the thief’s house who then turned all of his lights off and seemed to hide. They eventually got in, had trouble locating the phone, but did find it. The victim here actually snapped more photos at this point, some of the police to prove this wasn’t a massive internet troll job.

At this point in the thread, the members of Overclockers have figured out all there is to know about “Moley” and are now meme-ing photos from his life. It’s frickin’ hilarious.

In the end, the phone was returned (pictured above) and the thief was let off with a “caution” because he had some BS story to tell the cops. It may not seem like much, but trust me, you will laugh more times than you can count if you spend 15 minutes cruising through some of this saga.

Oh, you should probably think about installing a security app at some point to. You never know when it might help you create internet gold.

Via:  Overclockers | reddit


  • mannequins

    Hahaha. Dang I really wish I was a part of this thread when it was live.

  • socalrailroader

    If somebody steals my phone, I’ll just do the Insurance thing, it’s not worth the time or effort to catch the thief, and even if you do, are you seriously willing to confront the possibly dangerous person over a phone?

    • socalrailroader

      Some things in life are worth it, others aren’t.

  • 001BINARY100

    tempted to get a security app just so I can mess around with anyone who steals my phone in the future (as opposed to getting it back)

  • I also use Cerebus and have been really impressed with the amount of features it offers for a real low lifetime price! Great to see it working 😀

  • DeathfireD

    FYI. To American Samsung owners Someone in the Overclockers suggested the phone owner should use Samsung “Dive” since it’s built into all their phones. Being an Samsung owner and not knowing about Dive I instantly went to check it out. Turns out Samsung disables it for American users for some reason…which is a major shame.

  • Srunano
  • Avery Dejuan Herron

    never use wave secure biggest piece of crap out

  • John Burke

    I had a similar story a couple years ago with PhoneLocator Pro.

    My Nexus S got stolen & he swapped my SIM out which sent me automatically his SIM info, GPS location & his picture.
    I then walked across the street to the lobby of the building he was in. When I saw him I used my backup phone to force the Nexus S to lock him out, post a message on-screen & ring at full volume “the Dancing Hamster” song. As he fumbled through his back to turn it off I approached him to retrieve my property.
    Best 5$ ever spent!

  • renGek

    At first I didn’t have the patience to read the long thread about this. But I’m glad I did. Its hilarious. When those posters started putting up wanted posters of him and the thief’s online dating photos, I fell off my chair. Its better than most books.

  • Chris Hollenbeck

    Nothing is more satisfying than actually catching a thief stealing your stuff.

  • Bigwavedave25

    Just today I was cleaning out my “Android” folder and saw a Cerberus.zip and was thinking to myself “What the heck did I download this for?” Obviously never installing it on my phone. Thanks D-L, now I know. 🙂

  • Joey Funk

    Just had my phone stolen and I snapped a picture of the theif before hand and It was auto uploaded to Google so I was able to get the police Lots of info, and they caught him robbing a CVS Sunday, but no sign of my phone or laptop yet…

  • This app is way better and more features then Seekdroid. If you have never lost a device let me tell you it can be a nightmare you do not realize what you have on your device till you lose it.

    This is a must have if you have sensitive info on your device. Yup my porn is sensitive info give it back to me…..lol

    “Three can keep a secret, if two are dead” Benjamin Franklin

  • I’m game for some wardriving.

  • MichaelFranz

    WIN on many levels

  • brando56894

    I used to have wavesecure on my phone all the time but I would flash roms constantly and would forget to install it half the time.

  • Detonation

    I always though these security apps were kind of pointless, since they don’t work if the phone is off or factory reset, but it looks like Cerberus can be installed as a system app so the only way to get rid of it would be to flash a rom or wipe system, which your typical thief will have no idea how to do. Any other security apps work like this?

  • Silver Veloz

    Just looked and read about the app in Google Play and watched the video utilizing it. This looks great. I may just have to purchase this. Great reviews also.

  • etche

    How about making a POLL for security apps? I use seekdroid cause I like its webpage but i’d like to know what you all think about this apps.

    • Yeah I also use Seekdroid, it was free a while back on the Amazon Appstore.

      • etche

        Too bad it hasn’t been updated in a whole year and that you can’t take a picture of the thief

    • duke69111

      I use mobile defense and have for a long time, but development has been slow and I think they closed the beta.

    • S2556

      I use prey. Never had to use it though

    • Chris Hollenbeck

      Prey works great for me.

      • That’s what I use with dropbox instant upload. I can’t take pictures, but I try to keep my phone safe 🙂

    • I use Cerebus. A while back ago they had it on sale for free and I snagged it then,

  • Great write-up Kellen. Glad to see some outside of the box stuff. And this is a friggin’ HILARIOUS story…

  • Police should be stripped of their badge for letting thief go.

    • Paolo_Ozaraga

      If they don’t have enough evidence to prosecute, then it’s not worth it to arrest and charge the guy when a half-decent lawyer can just get them out and sue the police.

      • What more evidence do you need the multiple sim changes, and finding the phone at the residence of the thief?

        • Droidzilla

          That’s not proof of a theft. I’d be willing to bet all the money I have that the guy did it, but that doesn’t hold up in court. Pleading ignorance gets people out of jail 90% of the time.

    • Droidzilla

      I can’t believe they actually went. I’ve given local cops in another city direct info on an identity thief before (we do a lot of CC transactions at my business) and they wouldn’t even bother filing a report.

  • Read it all last night, there’s a lot of random posts, but all in all it was a great beginning, middle and end. Just another reason why I’m glad I bought Cerberus. So for everyone else who doesn’t have it yet, buy it! Then just remember to 1. Root your phone (that way it can remotely turn on GPS) 2. Download/Install the zip to have it as a System Application so it won’t be lost if the thief factory resets the phone 3. Don’t have a PIN/Pattern unlock otherwise your chances of recovering it will go down pretty far

    • Futbolrunner

      Pardon my newbness, but how do I install the zip to have it as a system app? I take it its different than just downloading the app from the play store? My phone is rooted btw.

      • I’m not 100% sure but I think you boot into recovery and flash the zip using Android Recovery.

        • Futbolrunner

          Thanks man, appreciate it.

      • Like Champion1229 said, you go to cerberusapp.com and download the zip, drop it on the phone sdcard, reboot to recovery and install it. You can choose either the normal app which will show in your app drawer as “Cerberus” or you can get the hidden version which shows up instead as something like “System Framework”

    • Why don’t I want a PIN/Pattern? Mine takes a photo after 2 failed unlock attempts.

  • Mordecaidrake

    I’ve been considering buying this app for awhile.

    • Crazydog

      It’s $4. I think that’s worth being able to find who stole your phone.

      • There are tons of options out there, but this is definitely one of the better.

      • I bought it a while back and have it installed on three devices. You just never know…

      • Bionicman

        I bought it and have it on both my phones. its amazing especially if you are rooted. being able to take pictures and record video/conversations is the best. not to mention it’ll also turn on GPS and other features remotely and quietly.

      • JoshGroff

        Crazydog, I choose you!

        Crazydog used logic, it’s super effective.

    • Sam Paasch

      I have Lookout Security on my phone, and am now installing Cerberus. It’s worth it, especially since the license is lifetime! No monthly fees. 🙂

      • Tim242

        Lookout is a battery and system resource hog. Totally worthless.

  • KB Smoka

    Best thing I’ve seen/read all day!

  • Simon Belmont

    Pretty neat. Goes to show you that the tracking software is effective.

    When the Internet bands together for something good, miraculous things can happen. Nice article.

  • brkshr

    This is why Cerberus rules them all!

    • brkshr

      The memes are the best part of that thread

  • Jroc869, Nexus-Life