Buying a used iPhone - Find My iPhone

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by barcode00, Jun 9, 2018.

  1. barcode00 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    I'm looking to purchase a used iPhone, but I'm concerned about the Find My iPhone security feature.

    I'm aware some people have trouble if this feature is not disabled, resulting in the phone not being usable by the buyer.

    I have asked the seller about this - they say the phone has been "factory reset". Is this enough to permit a new owner from using the phone uninhibited? Would they have had to explicitly 'turn off' the feature prior to factory resetting it?

    Thank you.
     
  2. chscag macrumors 68030

    chscag

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    #2
    In order to factory reset an iPhone, "Find My iPhone" must first be disabled. However, once the reset has been performed and phone boots up again, the "Find My iPhone" feature will get turned on automatically. You need to personally check the phone to be sure it's turned off. You do that by going to Settings, Owner's Name, iCloud, Find My iPhone. (should show off)
     
  3. hallux macrumors 68030

    hallux

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2012
    #3
    Not "some people", ALL.

    The post by @chscag is slightly misleading. Turning off Find My iPhone is not a requirement to do a factory reset. It IS a requirement if the purpose of the reset is to prepare the device for sale.

    As was indicated, you need to be sure before parting ways with the seller that the feature was turned off prior to the reset, otherwise you'll end up with a paperweight.
     
  4. Audit13 macrumors 68030

    Audit13

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2017
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    #4
    Best way to make sure you can use the phone is to sign into your own iCloud account in the phone settings.
     
  5. Tech198 macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2011
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #5
    iCloud is not required.. We can assume the buyer was assuming that the seller used icloud, or it was just a general question to the seller.
     
  6. ApfelKuchen macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2012
    Location:
    Between the coasts
    #6
    Attempt to setup the device when you're in the presence of the seller (if it's at the Hello setup screen, just proceed from there). If the phone is already setup, you should do an Erase All Content and Settings, then setup the iPhone. If it is still signed into Find My iPhone you'll find out soon enough.
     
  7. hallux macrumors 68030

    hallux

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2012
    #7
    If this is the case, the buyer has the perfect opportunity to just go into settings and confirm that FMiP is turned off before doing the reset. This way you're not going through the reset, finding out it's still locked to an account, sign in to that account, turn off FMiP then reset again.
     
  8. ApfelKuchen macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2012
    Location:
    Between the coasts
    #8
    This is not a 100% fool-proof test. A device can be signed out of iCloud at the time of inspection, yet still be activation locked.
     
  9. hallux macrumors 68030

    hallux

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2012
    #9
    Say what? The way to disable the iCloud activation lock is to turn off Find My iPhone in the iCloud settings on the device. It can't get much more foolproof than doing exactly what I said in the post you quoted. If it can, please elaborate...
     
  10. ApfelKuchen macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2012
    Location:
    Between the coasts
    #10
    It's possible to be signed out of iCloud while still being signed into Find My iPhone.

    You're absolutely right - turn off Find My iPhone from iCloud settings and you're done. However, there are several ways to be signed out of iCloud that will still leave Find My iPhone (Activation Lock) enabled. For example, after a password change in Settings > (name) > Password & Security you'll be prompted to sign other devices out of iCloud. If you use that option, other devices on the account are forced to sign into iCloud with the new password. However, Find My iPhone remains on throughout.
     
  11. hallux macrumors 68030

    hallux

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2012
    #11
    See, this is why I was confused when you said it wasn't as simple as what I suggested. I said nothing about signing out of iCloud, I specifically said to check on Find My iPhone...
     

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