How To Erase Your iPhone’s Data Before You Sell It

Are you planning to sell your iPhone to buy Apple’s next generation iPhone?

Before you sell or trade-in your iPhone, it is extremely important to erase your personal data on it. You’ll be surprised how many people sell their iPhones without doing anything to remove personal data.

Follow these simple steps to make sure that your personal data such emails, text messages etc. cannot be accessed by a stranger.

Backup your iPhone’s data:

Before you erase your iPhone’s data, it is important that you first take a backup of your data, so that you can restore it to your new iPhone.

Depending on which version of iOS you’re using and your sync preferences, you’ll either backup to your computer or Apple’s iCloud service.

Back Up via iCloud:

iCloud automatically backs up most of the important data on your iPhone (running on iOS 5 or higher) on a daily basis. But you can manually take a backup one last time before we show you how to delete your personal data.

  • Please ensure you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network.
  • Launch the Settings app
  • Navigate to iCloud -> Storage & Backup
  • Tap on Back Up Now
This can take several minutes depending on when your iPhone was last backed up to iCloud.

Back Up via iTunes:

  • Connect your iPhone to the computer that you normally sync it with.
  • Open iTunes and select your iPhone under Devices in the left-hand navigation pane
  • Right-click (or Control-click) the device and select Back Up
Note: If you’ve purchased some items on your iPhone and haven’t transferred these purchases to your computer yet, right-click the iPhone and choose “Transfer Purchases” to transfer the purchases prior to backup.
Erase all your iPhone’s Data and Settings:
Now that you’ve taken a backup of your data, you can follow these steps to delete the data and settings from your iPhone.
Note: It is advisable that your iPhone has full charge or connected to a power source before beginning this process.
  • Launch Settings app
  • Tap on ‘General’
  • Scroll down to the bottom and tap on ‘Reset’
  • Tap on “Erase All Content and Settings” option
  • If you’ve set a passcode, it will prompt you to enter the passcode
  • After entering the passcode, it will prompt you one last time if you want to delete data and settings from your iPhone.
  • Tap on ‘Erase iPhone’ button

During this process your iPhone will display the Apple logo and a progress bar. The process may take few minutes to several hours based on the version of your iPhone and the amount of data on your iPhone.

If you’ve jailbroken your iPhone then it is advisable to erase all your iPhone’s data and settings by plugging it your computer and clicking on the “Restore” button.

Unlink/Unregister your iPhone:

It may be also be a good idea to unregister your iPhone from Apple’s website so that it is no longer linked to your Apple ID.

  1. Go to: https://supportprofile.apple.com/MySupportProfile.do
  2. Log in if not already logged in.
  3. Click on “edit products”
  4. Click on the “x” to the right of the product.
  5. Click “Unregister”

To be on the safe side, you should also unlink your iPhone from services like Dropbox, Pandora etc..

That’s it! As you can see, it is very simple to prepare your iPhone for resale. If you’re planning to sell your iPhone, be sure to check out the best places to trade-in your iPhone.

If you’ve any questions, please feel free to ask them in the comments section below.

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