My friend stole my iPod but I can't prove it. But he knows my account information, and I have the device on my Macbook iTunes, and the name is all of a sudden his name. Is there a way to be able to tell if he changed it or if I were to plug it in my computer would I be able to tell if it's mine?

Also is there a way I can get Apple to tell me what my iPod Touch name was in March and to see if it's the same as what he changed it to?

  • 1
    I think iTunes backups contain info on the UUID of the device they were made for, that might be a good place to start your search
    – Alexander
    Nov 9, 2012 at 3:03

2 Answers 2


I had to retrieve a serial number from a device which was lost. If you go to https://supportprofile.apple.com/ and login with your iTunes account, then it should show every device you've either bought through the Apple Store, or synced with iTunes, along with the serial numbers. I hadn't known about this before I had to use it.

  • This is great, didn't know about this one. It doesn't seem to have all my devices though, despite having entered Apple ID info in them (e.g. for Back-to-my-Mac / iCloud) and/or syncing with iTunes. Also doesn't have my previous devices (since sold/given away) so I wonder if it automatically removes them if someone else registers them? Nov 9, 2012 at 4:27
  • I'm not sure about that, i haven't had got rid of anything, sorry. Nov 9, 2012 at 10:29

You can get the serial number for iPod/iPhone/iPad devices you've plugged into your Mac with iTunes from the file ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.iPod.plist.

For more info on opening plist (Property List) files, see How do I open a .plist file?

Inside com.apple.iPod.plist, the Plist structure has a Dictionary of Devices, with each device listed separately under that, using a unique hex string (something like 4223F0FD7A331BA1), under that you'll see useful information like:

  • Device Class (e.g. iPod)
  • Connected (last date iTunes connected to the device)
  • Family ID (Apple's code for a specific family of device models)
  • Serial Number

The first few should let you figure out exactly which one is the iPod you think your friend has stolen. The last 3 digits of the Serial Number specify the device model, so you can differentiate some of them based on this advice if there are multiple iPods listed. The Serial Number of course cannot be changed so identifies the specific device.

It's not entirely clear from your question how you're seeing the device in your iTunes, but presumably it is on the same wifi network or something? If your iTunes has connected to both yours and his iPod (which you allege to be the same device), then you should be able to check whether it is indeed the same device by looking at this list of devices. I'm not sure if this list is updated for devices seen on the wifi network or not though, or whether its only for devices that actually sync.

You should be able to tell fairly easily if his iPod is in the list though by checking the 'Connected' dates on any iPod devices in the list.

If its a different device (and if your com.apple.iPod.plist file hasn't been cleared since you lost your iPod), then there'll be a separate entry for each. For example, another iPod in the list that was last connected around the date you lost yours, along side his new iPod... If its the same device, then it'll only have one entry, so your old one won't be shown separately, and you will see the Serial Number there, with a recent 'Connected' date. However this isn't exactly proof since its still possible your old iPod is simply not listed for some reason.

If your friend's iPod isn't showing up in the list (based on recent Connected dates), then you can hopefully at least get the serial number of your iPod from this list (again, if it's not been cleared for some reason). You can then compare it to the serial number of his iPod to check if it's the same. Here is some info about getting serial numbers off iPods.

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