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Please can you help? Been ripped off with DS Christmas Gift.

(112 Posts)
Gossipmonster Sun 17-Nov-13 17:02:16

Last resort is to ask here dear Mumsnetters.

Can anyone offer me some advice please?

OH bought DS an iphone 4S from Gumtree yesterday for £140 for Christmas. We could not afford to buy him a brand new one.

It has been updated to ios 7 and restored to factory settings. Problem is that it is already linked to an apple account. Person we bought it from is refusing to communicate with us and seems unable to remove the device from the iTunes account. Meaning it is useless and the money I had put by for DS present has gone sad We have 5 other kids to buy for.

I have contacted the police who were really helpful and say it is not registered as stolen but was checked a few months ago at a cash converters suggesting the person we bought it from has experienced the same issues and just passed it on to us.

Police have suggested contacting Apple (which we did yesterday and then can't help) or taking it to a phone unlocking shop. We have reported the seller to Gumtree but that is not going to get us a refund.

Does anyone have any experience of this and know of any solutions?


terrierist Tue 19-Nov-13 20:04:42

OP did you manage to find a solution or another phone?

Ev1lEdna Tue 19-Nov-13 16:17:04

There are some truly kind, generous and lovely people on this thread.
OP I hope it all ends well and your DS is happy with his present.

I really have learned a thing or two from this thread.

poorbuthappy Tue 19-Nov-13 15:47:23

Ummmm I have to give the sim back too. Is that going to make a difference?

MaidOfStars Tue 19-Nov-13 14:39:24

ive just sold my ipad2 through facebook. I reset it to factory settings which erased all my data etc. it was updated to ios7 and was fully working when I sold it and I havent had any complaints from the buyer. so it must be possible to log in via a new apple id.
My husband sold an iPad last week, iOS7 and FindMyiPad app active. He was worried about this, so went through the process yesterday (to arm himself against a disgruntled buyer).

When you try a factory reset now, it prompts you, via a pop up dialogue, to disable the FindMyiPad app - to do this, you input your password. It was just one of the several password prompts necessary to restore, so he thinks he probably disabled the FindMyiPad/activation lock without really noticing. Is it possible you did the same?

This makes it all the more likely that the OP received her phone from a malicious seller, as it would be impossible for him to factory reset without the original password. You cannot get around this pop up dialogue to input password into FindMyiDevice.

IAlwaysThought Tue 19-Nov-13 14:04:26

As long as you have taken out the sim you will be ok smile

poorbuthappy Tue 19-Nov-13 13:59:03

I have just done a factory reset on an iphone 4 which is going back to ex employer. I had to update the software to IOS 7 in order to do the factory restore.

Dull question - should I do anything else to the phone?

magentastardust Tue 19-Nov-13 13:49:47

Not that this helps with getting the phone sorted but shouldn't Gumtree be able to pass you on or contact the seller on your behalf? I think as you have had support from the police that they should take some responsibility in contacting someone who has sold an item via their site knowing that it isn't fit for purpose.

friday16 Tue 19-Nov-13 13:29:43

That's the point, armani, you erased the phone before it changed hands. It's when people don't that the trouble starts, and the usual reason for that (assuming most people don't intend to hand a phone over with their contacts, email settings and so on pre-configured) is that it's been stolen.

It's also the case that fewer people set up "Find my iPhone" on their iPad than do on their iPhone.

armani Tue 19-Nov-13 13:14:55

ive just sold my ipad2 through facebook. I reset it to factory settings which erased all my data etc. it was updated to ios7 and was fully working when I sold it and I havent had any complaints from the buyer. so it must be possible to log in via a new apple id.

DingbatsFur Tue 19-Nov-13 13:06:04

You can indeed unlock a dead person's iphone. You need a copy of the death cetificate or obituary and your own id. Make an appointment at the genius bar, discuss it with them and follow up with the phone provider.
It can be done.

IAlwaysThought Tue 19-Nov-13 12:55:39

moldingsunbeams. Normally if you buy a second hand iphone from an honest seller they will have reset the iphone by doing a FACTORY RESET. This will erase all. The old sellers info and will return the iphone to its factory settings.

The reset function is on all versions of iOS not just iOS7. It is also on iPods and iPads.

You can activate the factory reset either directly from the devise in question or from iTunes.

MaidOfStars Tue 19-Nov-13 10:28:19

Yes, it's an iOS7 feature.

moldingsunbeams Tue 19-Nov-13 10:07:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

friday16 Mon 18-Nov-13 20:10:40

Pretty much, yes. And if you set an auto-lock timeout, then unless the thief manages to keep using it continuously, as soon as they leave it alone for 60 seconds (or whatever) they'll need the PIN they haven't got.

I also set a SIM PIN on mine, as an extra line of defence. Sixty seconds unused and the phone locks, and the SIM locks as soon as the power's taken off it. Completely useless to the thief, and very difficult to recover data from even with fairly exotic tools.

MaidOfStars Mon 18-Nov-13 19:20:50

So am I correct in thinking that the only value in a stolen iDevice now is if a thief happens to grab a non-PIN protected one for use until the owner bricks it remotely? Said thief cannot change the PIN (if there is one) or remove Find My iDevice without the setup password, nor can s/he factory reset because the activation lock will be enabled?

IAmTheLordOfRedundancy Mon 18-Nov-13 18:45:45

Thanks IAlwaysThought. grin Yes it was satisfying. The policewoman that gave it back was amazed herself. Luckily he'd not hadvthe chance to sell anything on. It went in the evening and was found around 7am the following morning. The lad who took it is the son of a regular customer. I felt quite sorry for her. She was devastated. I did say that as an adult he makes his own decisions and shes not to blame.

friday16 Mon 18-Nov-13 18:28:32

If you are buying a second-hand iPhone/iPad that is running iOS7, you need to read the details of Activation Lock.

Here is the crucial part:

Follow each of these steps to make sure that you can use the device you purchase:

Turn the device on and slide to unlock.
If the passcode lock screen or the home screen appears, the device has not been erased. Ask the seller to completely erase the device by going to Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings. Do not take ownership of any used iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch until it has been erased.

Begin the device setup process.
After choosing a language, choosing a country, and connecting to a network, the device will begin activation. If you are asked for the previous owner’s Apple ID and password, the device is still linked to their account. Hand the device back to the seller and ask them to enter their password. If the previous owner is not present, they can remove the device from their account by signing in to Do not take ownership of any used iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch until it has been removed from the previous owner’s account.
You will know that a device is ready for you to use when you are asked to “Set up your iPhone", “Set up your iPad", or “Set up your iPod” during the device setup process.

IAlwaysThought Mon 18-Nov-13 18:24:49

MaidOfStars That was possible before iOS7 but now you can't disable Find My iPhone unless you have the owners iCloud account details.

Good job too grin

MaidOfStars Mon 18-Nov-13 18:19:08

A thought - if someone steals your phone and is able to access it, if they disable the Find My iPhone app then run a factory reset, this would render the phone free of the activation lock? Do you have to enter the iTunes/setup email and password to perform a factory reset (when not connected to iTunes)?

IAlwaysThought Mon 18-Nov-13 18:08:40

IAmTheLordOfRedundancy. (Great name btw). That must have been very satisfying grin. It's lucky the police could trace it to an actual house as sometimes it's not that precise.

The latest IOS7 version of Find My IPhone is fantastic. Its so much better than the earlier versions which could be deleted without the owners Apple ID.

IAmTheLordOfRedundancy Mon 18-Nov-13 17:58:57

I fucking love apples security measures. My handbag was stolen from work. Because of that phone everything in my bag was returned to me including the only picture I have of my dad. The idiot who stole it had the cheek to look annoyed when the police tracked my phone to his house. His mum was so ashamed.

MaidOfStars Mon 18-Nov-13 13:20:06

friday Ta for the info. Hadn't considered the fact that not all iDevices are connected to a mobile network blush

friday16 Mon 18-Nov-13 13:01:50

There are "activation locked" iPhones on Ebay, listed for parts. Still quite a lucrative business, the stealing of them.

Yes, but it's much less profitable than selling them as a going concern, and somewhat harder to do for cash in pubs. Yes, breaking an iPhone for parts is going to destroy the evidential trail, and I'm somewhat sceptical about where those "we fix your screen cheap" places get their parts, but it's a very different class of crime to selling iPhones ready to use in pubs.

called the network provider to brick the lost handset. So how is this feature an advance on this?

That doesn't brick an iPod Touch, or a non-GSM iPad (ie, almost all of them) and doesn't prevent a stolen iPhone being used as an iPod Touch or a stolen GSM iPad being used as a not-GSM iPad. IMEI-blocking is also pretty hit and miss, and tends not to work (or, rather, the phones do work) over national boundaries. A phone blocked in the UK will almost certainly work pretty well anywhere outside the EU.

MaidOfStars Mon 18-Nov-13 12:49:07

Fewer muggings in the street aimed at stealing phones is a good thing, right?

There are "activation locked" iPhones on Ebay, listed for parts. Still quite a lucrative business, the stealing of them.

One thing I haven't worked out though: We lost an iPhone in Spain this year. From my handset, we activated Find My iPhone on the lost handset, and called the network provider to brick the lost handset. So how is this feature an advance on this?

BloominNora Mon 18-Nov-13 12:34:57

It is and if someone who buys a phone 'on the cheap' knowing that there is a good chance that it was nicked then they deserve to be left with nothing.

However, the OP did everything right, including calling the police to check it wasn't stolen.

The fact that there is no way at all for her to now get it unlocked is terrible.

Yes, you could argue that a few innocent people getting ripped off like the OP is a fair price to pay for fewer muggings, but when you take into account that the people most likely to be looking for second hand phones are those who are unlikely to be able to afford new ones and not everyone knows about the draconian measures being taken in Apples new iOS, then what is essentially happening is less well off people are being punished for not being able to afford new stuff.

Yes, it is a good security measure, but it is also a good way of making it a PITA to buy second hand, so more people will go straight for new - something which I am fairly certain would have been part of Apple's consideration when they put it in place. Especially given that in the medium term, the determined criminals will soon find a hack, so the only people who really lose out long term of the people who can't afford to buy new.

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