Someone stole my Neo Freerunner... :(

Helge Hafting helge.hafting at
Wed Jan 28 14:38:30 CET 2009

bburdette at wrote:
> If you don't want to risk being sued for a booby trapped phone, how 
Hard to prove whose phone it was, after it exploded. And then they have 
to prove that it was you who set the trap. Still, not recommended.

> about at least a way to render the it useless to thieves?
> For instance, you could make it unbootable from a zero power situation, 
> and then combine that with a rapid power discharge.  If the thief leaves 
> it uncharged for even a day, its bricked!

At least the thief can't use it that way, but he'll just throw it away.

If you want it back, consider software that does this:
1. Sends a sms with gps location now and then. But not so often as
    to use up the battery quickly.
2. Replace the usual ringtone with "Help, this phone is stolen!"
3. Replace the window manager with a single window that reads:
    This phone belong to:
     <any other contact info, phone, email,...>
     Please return it for a $nn refund.
    There should be no user interface here, no buttons to press and
    no way out. (If you get it back - reflash or log in with ssh to
    get it out of "stolen mode". You should have a nice long root

Some thieves might go for the refund, when they find that the
phone cannot be used at all. Others might throw it away. Someone else 
might find it and go for the refund, or you might be able to find it at 
the reported gps location.

Still, if you want to brick the phone badly - overwrite the gsm modem 
firmware. No more calls! Then overwrite both nand flash and nor flash - 
nor more boot. Or maybe the boot message could show the "stolen" message 
above, and shut down again after a minute to conserve battery. After 
this, a debug board will be necessary.

Helge Hafting

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