Help! MacBook locked and requiring PIN to do anything!

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Stealthylight, Oct 28, 2011.

  1. Stealthylight macrumors newbie

    Oct 28, 2011
    Okay, so in all my experience with the Mac I have never encountered this. Let me know if I'm crazy.

    I was was contacted by a friend who purchased a used Macbook Pro from a friend of his. He has discovered, however, that the Mac is requiring a 4-digit PIN to do ANYTHING!


    What's weird is that it does it right from startup. If he tries to boOt from anything (attempting to reformat the hard drive), it displays a lock.


    Has anyone seen this before!?! How would I bypass it without knowing what the PIN is!?!
  2. MBHockey macrumors 68040


    Oct 4, 2003
    New York
    The Mac has been remotely locked by the original owner. If it was really bought from a friend, call him and ask why he did that and ask what the security code is.

    You're sure he "purchased" it from a "friend"?
  3. k-hawinkler macrumors member


    Sep 14, 2011
  4. MVRL macrumors regular


    Oct 17, 2011
    so he "bought" it from a "friend"

    just call up the "friend", problem solved?
  5. djhyro macrumors member

    Mar 27, 2007
  6. GuitarG20 macrumors 65816


    Jun 3, 2011
    if your friend actually bought it from a friend, then call up the friend and get the password, because it sounds like the mac has been remotely locked, which is usually done when they are stolen.

    Otherwise, this sounds very sketchy. And we're not gonna tell you how to bi-pass it, because there's essentially very few ways to do this. and also this is super sketchy. contacted? that sounds like a business term, not a friendly term.
  7. Stealthylight thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 28, 2011
    Ah, sorry to make this sound sketchy, haha. I should have probably chosen my vernacular a bit differently.

    I think I understand now, however. I assume this was done through "Find my Mac". That would make all the sense now. I was myself curious because I had never seen this before and had no clue that it had been remotely locked. I'm going to try to replicate this on my Mac now. Needles to say I'll proceed with cation in regards to my friend. Thanks for your help!
  8. IllIllIll macrumors 65816

    Oct 2, 2011
    Why bother trying to replicate this on YOUR Mac?
  9. TheJing macrumors 6502a


    Jun 13, 2011
    Somewhere in Europe
    So have you managed to solve your problem?
  10. Stealthylight thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 28, 2011
    Because I wanted to see this was, in fact, the problem; and it was.
  11. NicoleRichie macrumors 6502

    Jun 30, 2007
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A334 Safari/7534.48.3)

    You could always return it to the rightful owner. Just a thought.
  12. Stealthylight thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 28, 2011
    Well, I know what the problem is. I texted him telling him that the only way to gain access to it was to get the PIN number from the friend, and he said she didn't know it. Weird, considering this is something that would have had to been done deliberately. I think I'm gonna step away from this one as it does seem to be fishy.
  13. GuitarG20 macrumors 65816


    Jun 3, 2011
    Yeah, I wouldn't associate too readily with that person... you definitely need to turn it on to lock a mac up like that... xD
  14. ipxtorm macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2012
    Did you resolve your issue? I mean do you already unlock your system?

    I'm thinking if this system lock code has limitation to guess the pin code, then when you reach that limitation what do you think will possibly happen? block the system? and you cannot anymore enter a pin code? or there is no such thing as limitation?

    Because I guess if there's no limitation on guessing the right pin code, then you have 10k of possibility to get it right. And I calculate that in every 5 pin codes per minute, so multiply it by 60 you'll have 300 pin codes per hour. Then divide it 10k by 300 you'll have 33.3 or 33 hours non stop LOL.

    I also want to ask, if this mode requires you to be connected to the internet? before entering the pin code?
  15. yusukeaoki macrumors 68030


    Mar 22, 2011
    Tokyo, Japan
    cmon guys.
    Lets just all say that "it looks stolen"
  16. ipxtorm macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2012
    yeah I guess it was. But can anyone answer my question if this has something like a limitation or requires you to have an internet connection?
  17. east85 macrumors 65816


    Jun 24, 2010
    Google might help you more than posting here. Just a thought.

    Assuming that your friend is telling the truth.
  18. Tritons macrumors 6502

    Jul 12, 2011
    I can think of few ways to bi-pass it but I belive noone will tell you that, at least me, since one lock his Macbook only if it is stolen.
  19. Queen6, Apr 21, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012

    Queen6 macrumors 604


    Dec 11, 2008
    Land of the Unexpected
    Tell your friend to ask for their money back, there are few reasons to lock a Mac remotely and the most obvious one it theft.......

    if it`s not your friend, you may be in for a bigger surprise ;) but only if you are very lucky...
  20. fieraku03 macrumors newbie

    May 1, 2012
    Guitar20, I seem to have the same problem with MBP 13". I bought this laptop from craigslist for cheap didn't know at the time it was locked as it had no battery to test it on exchange. I can't boot it at all, I replaced the hard drive and the ram, now the code screen does not come up anymore but it does not want to boot from a CD. All it shows at start up is a gray screen with a folder with a "?" flashing and no boot. What should I do to overcome this problem? I was told that I might need to do a "reset of logic board" is that even possible? If so would that solve the problem? Could you please help me? I am stuck with a computer that doesn't work at all,,,, and the guy I bought it for doesnt answer the phone...:(((( I really need help please!
  21. trikky macrumors regular

    Nov 10, 2011
    You have - most likely - a stolen computer. That means although you didn't steal it and may have bought it legitimately, if you suspect or know it is stolen, you are guilty of a criminal offence.

    Your only option is to take the computer to the police and inform them you think it's stolen and provide to them, the contact information for the person who sold it to you - including a copy of the ads and/or Email communications regarding the transactions.

    Now you know...this wasn't accidental on the part of the 'seller'.

    Sorry you were taken in by the scam, but unless you do the legal thing, you are also part of the problem. The police may be able to help you get your money back.

    Good luck.


    If the story is exactly as you've written, then your friend has most likely purchased a stolen computer. The only option is to contact the police and inform them of the potential, and they can investigate. The police could help your friend get their money back, as well.

    As for your role - you should completely wipe your hands of this. If you give your friend advice on how to get around this lock, you will be contributing to a crime, if indeed this laptop has been stolen.

    Good luck to the friend.
  22. DVD9 macrumors 6502a

    Feb 18, 2010

    Dope Fiend Move
  23. davariable macrumors newbie

    Sep 25, 2007
    Despite what the guy above me just said, you are not guilty of any criminal offense. You're an innocent, good faith buyer. If the original owner finds it, you'd probably have to give it back, but if you actually bought the laptop in good faith, you certainly would not be charged with any crime.


    You have no idea what you're talking about. Learn some actual property law if you're going to be giving legal advice. Even if the seller knew it was a stolen good, this poster, if he purchased the laptop in good faith definitely would not have any legal liability.
  24. Epic Xbox Revie macrumors 6502a

    Epic Xbox Revie

    Jun 15, 2010
    Washington, D.C.
  25. trikky macrumors regular

    Nov 10, 2011
    If the item is purchased in good faith and there is no idea the item is stolen, then you're right. However, once the buyer becomes aware the item is stolen, or is likely stolen, then there is a legal liability. In some jurisdictions, it is an offence to do nothing if you become aware a crime is taking place - doing something could be as simple as phoning the police and informing them.

    If the recipient becomes aware the item is been stolen and they attempt to discard the item - either by giving it away or unselling it, they are can be found guilty of a criminal offence.

    If the OP is a third party who has a friend who 'bought' a computer and the OP is aware that computer is stolen but proceeds to assist his friend to bypass security features (such as those outlined in this thread), the OP can be found guilty of a criminal offence.

    As it sits now, OP has received quite a lot of input that the computer very likely could be stolen property, and therefore OP has a responsibility to either report to the police with the potentially stolen item (and in most jurisdictions, if it's not claimed a few months after being handed in, the item becomes the property of the person who handed it in), or strongly encourage his friend to do that.

    There's certainly no way the OP can say "oh...I had no idea it may have been stolen..." because there are many people in this thread advising him of just that fact.

    Am I a lawyer? Nope. Am I a cop? Nope. Am I someone who works in a profession where we have to study multi-jurisdictional law regarding offences - specifically property, liability and fraud? Yep.


    Oh, is. :eek: That's what you get when you don't look at the date of the original post. :)

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