30 Seconds and It’s Free!

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Have you ever put something down and couldn’t find it for the life of you?  We did, and it literally walked away!

Earlier this week a Tuber Team member was out rescuing a client who’s truck had broken down.  He took photos of the vehicle as usual, set his device down and proceeded on with loading and securing for tow.  Once loaded he was ready to go, went to click the button to let dispatch know he was rolling but IT WAS GONE!

He looked everywhere for it, even in the vehicle he was towing as MAYBE he set it down in there, even though he was sure he didn’t.

Thief taking files

You know that sinking feeling in your gut when you know something bad has happened?  When you take a lot of pride in your work it hits you so hard when you feel you messed up, but you have to swallow your pride and make the call.  The operator reached out to his support team who was able to geolocate the device, and turns out, it was 30 blocks away.

Recent GPS history showed that WHILE he was loading the vehicle for tow it magically started moving at a radical place where it stopped at a residence not 20 minutes later…  Just about the time he had realized it was gone.

A thief had picked up the tablet and took of with it.  It wasn’t 30 seconds after it was set down and the theif thought he had gotten a NICE military spec tablet for FREE!  Not this time!

Our support team mobilized and contacted the Edmonton Police Service (EPS).  It wasn’t very long before our team had identified the specific residence and two top notch officers responded to the scene.  After a brief conversation with the occupants of the home, our tablet was handed over.

We cannot thank EPS enough for their professionalism and understanding in this matter.  The officers had mentioned that our team had their ducks in a row which made their jobs easier…  Anything we can do to help the police in any siutation we will do to the best of our ability, but we are just one part of this puzzle.  The officers were spot on, from inital contact, to preparing us of potential outcomes to completeing the objective.  Amazing Work!  (Commendation Letter sent to EPS)

“The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing.” -Henry Ford

So what did we learn?

Smart Devices

Most of us carry around devices that hold values higher than $1000, our phones.  We have become a little compacent with that fact and will set them down in the open for theives to take. Did you know 70 MILLION* smartphones are ‘lost’ each year!?  I’m not a mathmatician, but that’s a BIG industry.

Woman holding phone


The devices our team use are HARD registered to TUBER.  These devices are linked to our equipment and will have no use to the public.  We’ve invested in security software to be loaded onto these devices prior to being distributed to the team.  They are HARD CODED to us and won’t work at all for anybody else.  This not only provides a sense of security but has many other benefits such as remote support ability, cloud control to limit unneccesary use, and to ensure all the needed apps and functions exist for the team to be efficient in their day.  From a fleet perspective this makes everyone’s lives simpler and easier.  All while providing additional security.


Satellite tracking (GPS) is part of all these new devices and when utilized with the appropriate software they can provide reliablity beyond expectation.  In the Towing industry we use this feature for dispatching, navigation and communicating response times with our clients.  As proven here, the GPS tracked the device well after it had been taken, EVEN through a ‘Factory Reset’ function which yielded fantastic results.


There’s so many things they can do for us, but they come with one BIG ‘dont.’ That is, DO NOT set these things down where they can easily be snatched up.  Who would figure, in our case, working on the side of the road, we should have to think about setting the tablet down for 30 seconds while we continue to work.  From a personal, fleet, and towing perspective we can all take this as a reminder!  Keep an eye on it, invest in software/hardware to secure it and your information, AND ensure you have the ability to track it should it grow legs!

<a href=”https://www.freepik.com/vectors/computer-security”>Computer security vector created by freepik – www.freepik.com</a>

This Post Has One Comment

  1. John

    This article proves that there are people in the world happy to take advantage of a situation where our company was trying to help and had an item taken. Kudos to the law enforcement professionals who recovered the IT equipment and returned it to the company.

    Lessons learned and a sad indictment of people who would behave in such a manner toward a Driver/Operator acting as “the fourth emergency service” and trying to help a member of the public in distress. So glad that Tuber Towing still operates to its high standard proving “We Care” is not a sound bite or lip-service but shows commitment to the people we serve daily.

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