Monday, October 31, 2011

77. Using Your iPhone for Security

As I've written about many times on Digital Disney World, the iPhone is an extremely useful tool while on a Disney vacation. There are so many great apps and mobile websites available to help you get the most out of your trip. However, today I'd like to highlight a few uses for the iPhone that may not have crossed your mind. The first has to do with preventing the loss of your stuff, and the second is related to the safety and security of your kids.

Wilderness Lodge Pool
I recently read a very interesting news story about a Walt Disney World guest who had been robbed while vacationing with his family at the Wilderness Lodge. He was swimming in the resort pool and had left his bag unattended. It contained two wallets with credit cards and cash, identification, hotel room keys, a digital camera, and two iPhones. After emerging from the pool, he realized his bag had been stolen. Although he was obviously unhappy with the situation, he knew that there was a chance he could locate his stuff because he understood the power of the iPhone. This guest quickly went to the front desk to pick up a replacement key, and rushed back to his room where he fired up his laptop. Through the magic of modern technology, specifically Apple's "Find My iPhone" app, he was able to locate his iPhone on a map and narrowed its location to the vicinity of the resort boat dock. He alerted security who accompanied him to the dock where they saw a suspicious looking man boarding the ferry to the Magic Kingdom. The security guard then downloaded the "Find My iPhone" app to HIS phone and logged in using the guest's account.

After determining that the thief was indeed on the ferry to the Magic Kingdom, the security guard and guest jumped into a patrol boat and a chase ensued on the waters of the Seven Seas Lagoon. After the ferry docked, the bad guy was quickly apprehended and the bag returned to its rightful owner. This is a great example of how valuable an iPhone can be when you are on vacation. Yes, the app was specifically designed to help you locate your lost phone, but for this guest it helped him retrieve alot more than just one iPhone. Although it may not be a great idea to leave valuables in an unattended bag while going for a swim, I'm sure we've all done it at one time or another. As safe and secure as the Disney resorts are, unsuspecting tourists sometimes make good prey for the criminally inclined. If you have an iPhone, it just makes sense to have the "Find My iPhone" feature enabled. For iOS 5 users, it can be found under the iCloud section of "settings." Also, make sure you always have "location services" turned on. Finally, if you need to locate a lost phone, you can simply go to or use the "Find My iPhone" app on another Apple device.

The second use for an iPhone that I'd like to quickly highlight will seem very simple compared to the above mentioned tracking technology. However, when it comes to the safety of your kids, this simple tip can be extremely useful in an emergency. Early in the morning, take a picture of your child with your iPhone (or any other camera phone for that matter). Now, on the off chance that you become separated or the child gets lost, you can show Disney cast members a current photo with exactly what he or she is wearing that day. This can be very helpful in the search for the missing child. Don't get me wrong, Walt Disney World is one of the safest places to go on a family vacation. However, as a parent, I'm always looking for that extra measure of security when it comes to our little guy. Better safe than sorry!

Have a Disneyriffic day and remember to keep moving forward. See ya real soon!

1 comment:

  1. Hey bro thanks for the shout out.. i'm the guy who got my stuff stolen at WL. here's my version of the story..