What happens after a Mac is returned to Apple?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by applejane, Jul 20, 2012.

  1. applejane, Jul 20, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2012

    applejane macrumors newbie

    Jul 20, 2012
    If you return a Macbook Pro within the first 14 days, how does Apple protect your privacy? Do they format the computers and then sell them through the refurbished section of their site? If so, do they use secure formatting options (such as 3-pass or 7-pass erase)?

  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I don't trust another company to protect my privacy. I suspect they may reformat the drive but I'm not willing to bet my data on it.

    If I were to return a Mac, I'd go through the secure erase (if its a hard drive) to ensure the data is properly expunged.

    Hoping that Apple uses the secure erase on returned equipment is probably not the best option.
  3. applejane thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 20, 2012
    Fair enough...

  4. TickleMeElmo macrumors regular

    Jun 19, 2012
    I'm quite sure that they secure erase the drives they receive as refunds. However, to make sure you should reformat your drive and secure erase it. The erase is particularly important if you are running an SSD due to the way that flash stores data in blocks and controllers handle reformatting.
  5. Mal macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2002
    I'd just about guarantee that they do a secure erase, simply because of the negative PR if they didn't and someone ran some data recovery software and got back even insignificant stuff. That said, I'd do it myself before sending one back too.

  6. gentlefury macrumors 68030

    Jul 21, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    When they get a return they reformat the partition, boot off of the network and restore the system to default.
  7. applejane thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 20, 2012
    Thank you all for your replies. I think the general consensus is yes they do format, but don't rely on them to do what you should really be doing yourself. Thanks!

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