A woman has unwittingly taken a picture of herself on a stolen iPhone that has then been sent to its rightful owner.
With a downloaded app, the owner was able to take a photo of the woman as she tried to unlock the £319 mobile phone, as well as map the phone’s location after it was stolen from the Coalition nightclub in Brighton, East Sussex earlier this month.
The owner, armed with the information and the photo emailed to them by the app, called Sussex Police.
The dark-haired woman appeared to be sitting in a car as she tried to access the white iPhone 4.
Police said they do not know whether the woman pictured was responsible for the theft but they appealed for her or anyone who recognises her to contact them.
Pc Gavin Crute, of Sussex Police, said: ‘The owner of the camera has a rather cool app that takes a picture of anyone who tries to unlock it, maps their current location and then sends all the info back to the owner in an email.
‘We don’t know that the woman is the person who stole the camera, but she obviously has had some connection with it in the meantime and I’d like to speak to her about it.’
Anyone with information is asked to call Sussex Police on 101.
There are various iPhone apps that track stolen iPhones. It is thought that the app used was iGotYa which is activated when a wrong passcode is entered into the phone keypad.
iGotYa is a third-party app, made by Cyndia, which is not available in the official Apple store.
It is an alternative to Apple’s free Find My iPhone software, which shows a stolen phone’s approximate location on a map but does not take a picture of its user.
Device Locator costs $2.99 (£1.86) allows the phone owner to track the location of a misplaced iPhone and take a photo which is then sent to a website where the photo can be viewed. This app also allows the user to trigger an audible alarm on the phone.
GadgetTrak costs $3.99 (£2.48) can generate location reports, send discreet messages to the device and also take a photo of the thief.
The latest statistics reveal 170 iPhones are stolen every day in London, many of them from pedestrians targeted by muggers on bicycles.
The wife of Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason recently said she is now too scared to use her phone in public after she was mugged while walking her dogs.
Annette Mason had her iPhone snatched from her grasp by a bike-riding hoodie as she was trying to send a text.