Uploading a self-portrait is rarely a good idea, particularly if you’re using a stolen iPad to do it.
Arkansas businessman Allen Engstrom was initially devastated by the theft of his personal iPad during a flight from Phoenix to Denver. Fortunately, the thief’s ill-advised decision to use the stolen device to upload a series of bizarre photos has provided Engstrom with a measure of comic relief.
"It's been a continuing fountain of entertainment for me,” he told local news station KTHV. “It's just like I'll wake up one day, and they'll be new pictures there, and I'm like, oh, my gosh, she has no idea."
Engstrom realized that something was amiss when his young son received a bizarre picture via the family’s photo stream.
"He said, Mommy, who's this? And of course, she said, I have no idea who that is. It showed up on my phone too," Engstrom told KTHV. "After a while, we figured out what was going on. That's the person that has my iPad."
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While it’s unlikely that Engstrom will be able to recover his stolen iPad, he has managed to capitalize on the thief’s stupidity. He has used his Twitter and Facebook accounts to keep fans updated on the latest strange photos. On one picture, he wrote “Hey cool! This is an actual pic of the wonderful person who stole my iPad. Apparently the pics she is taking of herself are backing up and appearing on my phone. No I'm not kidding, this is really happening.
"I have no problem with putting it on Facebook, because, hey, it's fun for me, and it's apparently fun for a lot of other people, and there's always the chance that someone will say, hey, I know who that is," Engstrom told KTHV. "And I want my iPad back."
Engstrom’s social media exploits have also generated some leads. By coordinating with fellow Twitter and Facebook users, he has learned that the iPad bandit lives in Phoenix, as well as her Instagram account name.
Of course, all of this could have been avoided if Engstrom hadn’t turned off the device’s location function.
Take a look at the thief's glamor shots: