Carrier iPhone 6+ bought from VZW is activation locked to someone else's AppleID

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by co22, Mar 26, 2016.

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  1. co22 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Location:
    Washington DC area
    #1
    Can anyone explain how a phone I bought "new" from VZW could be activation locked to someone else's AppleID? Did Verizon "pull a fast one" and ship me a used phone?

    Background: I recently did an "Erase All Content and Settings" on my iPhone 6+ and found that I couldn't re-activate the phone because it was linked to someone else's Apple ID (s*****@yahoo.com). I bought the phone directly from the VZW online store in December 2014 as "new" and am still making Edge payments on it. The phone has never been out of my possession, so how could it be activation locked to this yahoo.com Apple ID? I don't have a yahoo.com email account, nor will anyone I know admit to having a yahoo.com account.. The only plausible explanation that I can come up with is that VZW sold me the phone as "new" even though it was actually used - perhaps they had sold it to someone else (who has an AppleID s*****@yahoo.com) when the phone came out in October 2014 and that person returned the phone to VZW for one reason or another.

    The only good news is that after spending the better part of a week dealing with VZW and Apple and proving to Apple that I am the legitimate owner of the phone (with the original box,receipts and emails from the VZW order, and a receipt for AppleCare+ that I bought at an Apple Store a week after I got the phone), they did some magic in their databases and the phone is now activated and usable again.
     
  2. I7guy macrumors G5

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    Nov 30, 2013
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    What Exit?/Saguaro Country
    #2
    You bought the phone dec 2014 and you posting about it now? So the phone was totally sealed in plastic and had the protectors and all packaging?
     
  3. fanchee macrumors 6502a

    fanchee

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2009
    #3
    We had an iPhone 6s die last Saturday. Would not turn back on, no combination of button presses would reset it. iTunes would recognize it and say it needed to be restored, but when we would try, it would throw a 4014 error. Tried multiple computers, tried everything.

    Apple finally conceded it was a hardware issue and would replace the phone. However, the Sr. iOS rep said this phone was tied to some other Apple ID. We gave him every possible email address we have (knowing it could only be the one he told us it wasn't!) We purchased the phone on launch Sept 25 and sat in that Apple Store and set it up. There is no way it was tied to some other email address that we weren't aware of.

    Had to provide the original receipt, Apple did their thing after that, and new phone arrives Monday. Something odd is going on, but it's good to know we aren't the only ones!
     
  4. AFEPPL macrumors 68030

    AFEPPL

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2014
    Location:
    England
    #4
    Refurbished?
    It's really a question for apple and the provider, i doubt anyone can give you a good answer.
    Was there a malware issue for this?
     
  5. co22 thread starter macrumors member

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    Nov 1, 2011
    Location:
    Washington DC area
    #5
    Perhaps I should have been clearer: the phone worked until I did the factory reset a couple of weeks ago. When you do a reset, it needs to be reactivated. That's when I first encountered the activation lock problem... Also, the phone was originally shipped to me by VZW but I don't think it had shrink wrap on the box. At the time, I didn't think much of it because I assumed they'd put a Verizon SIM card in the phone and had activated it for me.
    --- Post Merged, Mar 26, 2016 ---
    I asked the Apple specialist who eventually reactivated the phone if he could tell me the date that the phone had been activation-locked by s*****@yahoo.com, but was told that he could not give me that information. I was hoping he could have told me if it had been done before December 2014, because then I would have had proof that VZW had shipped me a refurbished phone even though they charged me the full retail price for a new phone.
     
  6. C DM macrumors Westmere

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2011
    #6
    Did you originally login with your iCloud account on it and enable Find My iPhone (and thus associate Activation Lock to your account)?
     
  7. co22 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Location:
    Washington DC area
    #7
    If it was on launch day, I doubt someone else could have activation-locked the phone before you got it. Was the phone sealed in the box when they brought it out to you? Was it activated in your presence?

    Then again, I suppose it's possible that either Apple has a bug in their activation lock software or database, or perhaps someone has hacked Apple and is messing with their database.

    Yes. I had to turn off "Find My iPhone" before it would let me reset the phone.
     
  8. C DM macrumors Westmere

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2011
    #8
    When you restored it realistically it shouldn't have asked for any Activation Lock since you disabled Find My iPhone (which disables Activation Lock).

    Did the restore process upgrade your iOS version (which version is on the phone at the moment)?
     
  9. co22 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Location:
    Washington DC area
    #9
    Well, if you're correct and Find My IPhone is supposed to disable the activation lock, then I don't see how it could have been locked by s******@yahoo.com in the seconds between the time that I disabled Find My iPhone and when I reset the phone. In that case it's starting to sound more like a bug in Apple's software.

    Btw, Before the restore, the phone had 9.1 on it. When it finally got reactivated a week later, iTunes installed the latest version (9.2.1?) on it. Since then I've successfully updated to 9.3.
     
  10. I7guy macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2013
    Location:
    What Exit?/Saguaro Country
    #10
    Do you guys have two factor authentication turned on? Grasping at straws, but is it possible someone hacked your icloud account?
     
  11. tooslickz macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2016
    #11
    Had this happen to me too on my VZW iPhone 6 bought directly from Apple. Installed 9.3 beta 1, erased the iPhone and when trying to set it up, said it was activation locked to s*******@yahoo.com. I had to take it into the Apple store and show the original receipt and then they flashed a new iOS version that got rid of the Activation lock. I don't have an email that is s*******@yahoo.com so it seems strange that the lock would point to this icloud id for both of us.

    It sounds like it's a bug that is kind of related to http://www.macrumors.com/2016/03/24/apple-pulls-ios-9-3-older-devices/.
     
  12. 617aircav Suspended

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2012
    #12
    This is why i keep my reciepts forever.
     
  13. AlecEdworthy macrumors 6502

    AlecEdworthy

    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    Location:
    Leicestershire, UK
    #13
    I wondered about a link with the iOS 9.3 on older devices issue too (even though the devices in this thread are newer than those affected in the announcement). I have a 5s and when I updated (OTA, Wednesday) I was (unexpectedly) prompted to re-activate it but fortunately it was promoting me for my own credentials so I was able to complete the activation.

    A
     

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