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Sunday, June 8, 2008

Eye-Fi card tracks down camera thief

This is a story seemingly out of science fiction, but in reality happened. People unfortunately have a recurring tendency to forget their belongings; remember the times when somebody claimed that they lost their laptop or phone in the cab or train, or left the purse or wallet in the restaurant / hotel. By the time you remember, it is too late, it is only rarely that you get your belonging back. And of course, if it has been stolen, then the chances of getting it back is almost nil.
Well, here is a case where the camera that was stolen (and from which previous personal photos had not yet been retrieved) phoned back through the medium of the Eye-Fi card and even sent back photos of the thieves (the precious personal photos were also sent back). This happened through some coincidences, but is still remarkable:

Here's a new use for the Eye-Fi wireless SD card that we hadn't considered: A virtual private eye. Eye-Fi user Alison DeLauzon lost $1,000 worth of photo gear while on holiday in Florida. The Eye-Fi SD card, once plugged into your camera, hooks up to the internet and sends your photos to either an online sharing site or directly back to your home machine. In this case it was the latter, and the hapless thief not only sent the precious vacation shots back to Alison's computer, but -- according to the email we received from Gadget Lab reader Joe Volat -- "pictures [of] the thieves proudly displaying Alison's lifted camera equipment."

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