NEW iMac w/ Someone Else's Profile on it?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by mainstay, Jun 29, 2012.

  1. mainstay macrumors 6502


    Feb 14, 2011
    I recently purchased a NEW iMac from an Authorized Apple Retailer.

    I had an issue with my password and used my Apple Install disk to do a password reset.

    When I rebooted, low and behold, I am looking at SOMEONE ELSE'S Profile. Their email, their contacts, their pictures, everything!

    I called them (I had their contact information in their address book) and it turns out that they bought the iMac, used it for a bit, and returned it to the store.

    The store SHOULD have wiped this system, right?

    The store SHOULD have sold it to me with the admission that the system was used, right?

    What recourse do I have?

    The other user is livid that their information is in my hands...

    What can she do?

    Should Apple be notified?

    Is there a policy on this?

    Any thoughts on this?

    Is this normal practice for Apple and it's resellers?
  2. iMarvin macrumors 6502


    Sep 29, 2011
    On the internet!
    Just do what they did, return it, notify the store and buy a new one. Problem solved.:)
  3. Dwhite78 macrumors regular

    Jul 30, 2010
    I'd return the mac and purchase it directly from It's only a few days wait, and you can call after you place the order to see about getting bumped to priority overnight shipping for free.
  4. mojothemonkey macrumors regular

    Oct 23, 2005
    Report that retailer to the BBB and watch them jump through hoops to make you whole.
  5. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    While not the focus of this thread, it does show that one should always wipe the drive before returning a computer!
  6. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    Well, you and the previous owner could make the life of the retailer rather hard. The previous owner can sue them for mishandling private information, you can sue them for selling you a used computer as new. If you ask me, you should cause them as much trouble as possible. Things like these are simply unacceptable. At least they should offer you and the previous owner some sort of substantial (monetary) compensation.
  7. Kronie macrumors 6502a


    Dec 4, 2008
    I always wipe the drive on anything I am sending back......Who was the retailer?
  8. marzer macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    More importantly: Did you scour the files for sensitive bank and credit card info? Compromising photos perhaps?...I kid! I kid!

    Either press for a substantial discount or return it for a full refund. Yes, it should've been sold as a fully restored (clean!) discounted refurb or open box.
  9. Cat5e macrumors member

    Jul 12, 2010

    This is a serious breach of privacy for the former owner. Both of you should report them to the BBB.
  10. harcosparky macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    It's on the previous owner to remove his personal information before returning the computer.

    It is up to the retailer to disclose this unit as an " Open Box / Returned Unit ".

    No wonder this the our country is in the trouble it is in. Everybody wants to sue somebody at the drop of a pin.

    When I read this it reminded me of that thread where some goof said he was going to buy a new iMac planning to return it before the time to return ran out in case a new model came out.

    This thread also reminds me why I deal with Apple directly! ;)
  11. Buffsteria macrumors regular


    Jun 9, 2012
    That goof had the right idea, it's not our fault that Apple wants to screw us by "doubling down on secrecy".
  12. NewbieCanada macrumors 68030

    Oct 9, 2007
    You know, of course, the BBB is just a voluntary association that this retailer is almost certainly not a member of and has no power to actually do anything.

    They should be reported to Apple and the consumer affairs/protection branch of their government.
  13. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    I disagree. Or more specifically, I agree that the previous owner should have deleted the data before returning the machine as a common precaution, but the company is not permitted to sell personal data of a user to someone else without an explicit consent. They should have wiped the disk before selling it again. Moreover, they sold a used machine as a new one.

    BTW, I am not American, so I am not keen on suing anyone ;) But I absolutely detest incompetent and shady business practices. I know that if something like this would happen to me, I would be infuriated. I mean, we are talking about disclosure of private data and fraud here.
  14. CoreyLahey macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2012
    That is seriously f'd and I would assume highly illegal, when it comes to selling the unit as NEW. If you pay for a new item, it should be just that, factory new.

    Could you tell from the packaging, that the iMac had been in use before? It would be very interesting to know, if Apple repackages returned units or if that's on the authorized dealer. I would hope it was the dealer's fault...

    By the way, you should also consider warning other consumers about this dealer and definitely contact Apple directly.

    I wouldn't be upset about them not wiping the data, that way you at least were able to tell that somebody used the iMac already. Wiping that data would have only been in their interest and in the interest of the person who didn't delete her own data - which I must say, isn't very smart, if she left her profile on their deliberately before returning it.
  15. dauber macrumors regular


    Jan 10, 2012
    I see several people saying to deal with Apple directly when buying a new Mac.

    Well, I personally don't. Why? Because they don't give me interest-free financing if paid off within 18-24 months. :)
  16. Spike88 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 25, 2010
    Since humans are involved, mistake do happen.

    Is this "1 of a million" situation or common practice for this retail seller? That's the main question....

    Before reacting, put yourself in different shoes. If you returned something and forgot (or didn't know how) to erase your personal data, what would you want that person to do? Do you want them to erase the data for you? Treat others as you expect to be treated in life (if you make that same mistake).

    After the above task is completed to original owner's satisfaction, does the retailer want you to return the box? I would think so. Especially if you are expecting a "clean" system.

  17. mainstay thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 14, 2011
    Thank all for your feedback!

    I think this has the right of it and is closely aligned to how we are feeling:

    The Apple Dealer isn't giving much in the way of a satisfying response... very much downplaying it and making it sound as "Yay, you found this woman's files, she must be very happy to have them back!" I mean wtf? Either they seriously don't understand how absolutely in the wrong they are, or they think we are stupid.

    What makes it worse, the other user (this lady we called) IS HAPPY that we found her files... gawd! Not outraged, happy.

    I think a nice long conversation with Apple is in order.

    Oh, and word of mouth... ya - we'll be talking to all our friends.

    To address some of the other comments: the system looked pristine... BUT it was open BECAUSE WE PAID THIS COMPANY $125 / hr to set up the computer and have it ready for us.

    I think we got taken, personally.
  18. Occamsrazr macrumors 6502

    Apr 26, 2012
    Please post the name of the business, so that the rest of us can avoid them.
  19. mainstay thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 14, 2011
    It is a local Friendly Apple Shoppe (their name and spelling, not mine) in a small town in Canada - so I doubt it will affect anyone on these forums...

    ...and given the possible legal nature of where this is going, I'm not sure I should say the name at this point.

    I am going to ask for a bit of legal council...

    I don't know if anything will come of it... there haven't been any REAL damages... like I don't have this womans SIN or something... but I definitely have movies of her dancing around her kitchen (not in the buff =) ).

    But I am out the money for a NEW system that wasn't so.... some form of slap on the wrist is in order.
  20. ob81 macrumors 65816


    Jun 11, 2007
    Virginia Beach
    $125 an hour??? Wow.
  21. philipma1957, Jun 30, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2012

    philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
  22. Aj2488 macrumors regular

    Dec 13, 2007
    Chicago Suburbs
    Harcosparky, I couldn't agree more!
  23. Slow Programmer macrumors regular

    Jun 25, 2011
    Just wondering if the woman said why she returned the computer initially. Was it broken?
  24. mainstay thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 14, 2011
    yeah - that is a really good point... I think we have to get together and have a coffee...

    she doesn't seem upset at all, which is really irritating to us, as we think she should be livid that all her contacts and personal info (true, not a TON of information, and stuff embarrassing but not morbidly embarrassing or a career killer, but still) are here.

    but a good question.

    Excellent! --- am checking now.
  25. marioman38 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2006
    Elk Grove, CA
    Legal action probably isn't necessary. Send apple a quick email and see if they will mark down your local reseller as a bad store. Something like: "I can't believe that apple would authorize this incompetent, lying company as a reseller."

    Maybe contact a local news station that will surely get some attention. We have a guy locally who has a news segment that specializes in consumer/public mistreatment. If we tell the school district, or whoever is at fault that we are going to have to "get Jesse" then they usually resolve the issue quickly; not wanting to be in the media spotlight.

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