Human gerbil steals an iPhone 14 by chomping through retail store security measure

Apple iPhone
(Image credit: Apple)

A woman in China has been arrested after she chewed through a security cable to steal an iPhone 14 Plus. The cables are designed to prevent people from taking devices from demonstration tables and are usually pretty good at doing just that.

But that wasn't enough to stop the woman from Fujian province in southeastern China from swiping the iPhone, with surveillance footage showing the woman chomping through the cable before placing it in a bag.

The manager of the store where the iPhone was stolen from says that an alarm was triggered during the theft but that employees didn't spot anything unusual.

Nobody noticed

The South China Morning Post reports that the woman was subsequently picked up by police 30 minutes after leaving the store.

The woman says that she intended to buy a new iPhone but was put off by the high prices. "Qiu told the police that she planned to buy a new device at the store after losing her phone, but when she saw the prices she decided to steal one. She has been detained pending further investigation," the report notes. It's said that the woman tried to hide the fact that she was chewing through the security cable by pretending to use it whenever other customers passed her by.

The iPhone 14 Plus the woman stole was worth 7,000 yuan (around $960) but that isn't considered to be the best iPhone in the lineup. That tag falls to the iPhone 14 Pro Max, a device that costs considerably more.

High prices are expected to become a bigger factor when the iPhone 15 Pro lineup arrives later this month, too. Rumors claim that the new models will cost significantly more than their 2022 counterparts, with prices likely to increase as much as $200.

The new iPhones are set to be unveiled during a September 12 event before likely going on sale on September 22.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.