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How to back-up, wipe and protect your iPhone, Android or Windows phone before repairs

Discussion in 'iOS: iPhone, iPad, iPod' started by Jeanh, Apr 15, 2016.

  1. How to back-up, wipe and protect your iPhone, Android or Windows phone before repairs

    [​IMG]If you need to take your smartphone into a shop for repair you might think about protecting your data so people can’t snoop on it for the wrong reasons. It’s easy to do whether you’ve got an Android, iPhone or Windows phone, and here’s how.

    It’s normal to think our shiny, chunky, does-everything smartphone is going to go on forever or at least until we upgrade to another snazzier, snappier version. But unfortunately, sometimes they just give out; a motherboard can fizzle out, we may inadvertently drop it in something liquid and sticky, or one or two buttons can simply stop working.

    It’s moments like this we wish we had backed everything up. There’s not much you can do when the phone just dies, if you haven’t backed up you’re more or less up the proverbial cyber creek without a phone. However, if it’s just one or two things that have gone wrong and you need to take it back to the shop for repairs, you don’t want people snooping through your personal digital stuff do you?

    3 steps to follow : back-up, wipe, restore
    While, we’re not suggesting that phone repair staff rub their hands with hidden glee when a customer brings a device in for repairs, keen to have a riotous laugh at your expense, for sure you’d like to know your data is safe from prying eyes.

    After all you’ve probably got important emails, documents and photos on your phone which you certainly would not want falling into the hands of a identity thieve or someone who is simply unscrupulous.

    You might think that the phone’s lock screen PIN is secure enough to be in the repair shop for a few days. But there are Please or Register to view links that can extract your phone data even when the screen is locked. Please or Register to view links and some are used by people in repair shops to help customers retrieve data when their phone crashes.

    If you just need to repair something on a phone that isn’t working, for instance, a button, the simplest thing to do is:

    • Back up your phone
    • Wipe the phone clean
    • Restore from the backup when the phone is repaired
    Sending your iPhone for a repair? Here’s how to protect your personal data
    Backing Up
    • If you’re using iCloud, back up your phone by going to Settings > iCloud > Storage and Backup and click the Back Up Now button to do a backup.
    • If you’re using iTunes to back up your phone, connect to iTunes and do a backup.
    Wiping data
    Of course make sure you’ve backed it up before you wipe your phone.

    To wipe the phone go to: Settings > General > Reset and click the Erase All Content and Settings button. This will take the phone back to its factory defaults.

    Restoring the phone
    When you retrieve your phone from the repair shop, it should be as new, without any data on it. This means you will use it as a brand new phone.

    • When you start it up you will be asked to choose your language.
    • You will then be asked whether you want to set it up as a new phone, restore it from an iCloud backup or restore it from an iTunes backup.
    • Select Restore from iCloud Backup and follow the prompts if you used iCloud to back up your phone.
    • Alternatively if you’re backing up from iTunes again simply follow the prompts and all your saved data will be transferred to your phone.
    Sending your Android phone for a repair? Here’s how to protect your personal data
    You can use Android Backup Service to back up data connected to your Google account.

    Backing up
    There are lots of ways to back up the data on your Android device. However, for the sake of simplicity you can synch almost everything with a few simple taps such as app data calendar, Browser, Contacts, Gmail, Photos, Music, People details, and even more detailed things like Wi-Fi passwords and other device settings.

    You’ll see a screen that offers you the choice of what you want to back up – simply tick the boxes. All your data will be saved to Google servers

    • Go to Settings > Accounts (tap Google) > Select Google account > and check everything you want to sync.
    Wiping data
    Basically you do a factory reset to wipe the phone.

    • Go to Settings > Backup & reset > Factory data reset and then tap Reset phone.
    However, the thing about Android devices is that even following a factory reset, data can be retrieved.

    To be extra certain you can encrypt the data so even if someone does access it, the data is unintelligible.

    To encrypt data before you do a factory reset simply:

    • Go to Settings > Security > Encrypt phone
    However keep in mind that it can take a long time to encrypt data so the phone needs either to be fully charged or plugged in.

    Restoring the phone
    After you’ve backed up your data to your Google account you can use Android Backup Service to restore your data on your device.

    When you add your Google account to a device, the data that you previously backed up for that Google account is restored to the device

    • Open your device’s Settings menu.
    • Under ‘Personal, touch Backup & restore’.
    • Tick the box next to ‘Automatic restore’.
    Android users – keep in mind
    The steps listed above are the simplest but Android by its very nature, an open-source operating system with an interface that is tweaked by many smartphone manufacturers, can be complex.

    For instance, it’s not unheard of for users to struggle with backing up and restoring photos, despite the ‘native’ back up tool. Native backup has not always been the case, a few years ago Android never offered photo transfer.

    With this in mind it’s not unusual to hear plenty of people given voice to their dissatisfaction about the Android backup process with some saying they have lost photos.

    As a result some Android users prefer third-party photo backup apps. There’s lots of choice in this area and they are easy to use such as Please or Register to view links and Please or Register to view links.

    Given that Android is owned and driven by Google it’s also worth checking Please or Register to view links tips while the highly respected CIO magazine also offers some Please or Register to view links.

    All of your apps should restore easily and simply including Please or Register to view links. If you don’t have this security app on your phone it’s something you should consider, given that Please or Register to view links

    Sending your Windows phone for a repair? Here’s how to protect your personal data
    Windows phones are also becoming increasingly popular so you might want to know how to backup, wipe and restore your Windows device too.

    Backing up
    Windows Phone 8 and later models lets you save backups online. However, you will need a Microsoft account which you should have created during setup or while downloading apps.

    You will also need an OneDrive account for saving photos and videos. You can go to Please or Register to view links or just Please or Register to view links to create this account.

    • To back up your settings, Internet Explorer favourites, and a list of installed apps, go to Settings > Backup > App list + settings > Backup > On. Tap back up now to start the backup immediately.
    • To back up text messages, head to Settings > Backup > Text messages > Text message backup > On.

    • To save your photos and videos, go to Settings > Backup > Photos. Under both sub-heads – Photos and Videos – pick either Good quality or Best quality.
    Wiping data
    • In the App list, find and click on Settings
    • In the System section of the menu, click on About
    • At the bottom of this screen, click the box which says ‘Reset your phone’.
    • You’ll be presented with a warning message. Click ‘Yes’.
    • You may receive a second warning. Click ‘Yes’.
    Restoring the phone
    • Boot your recently wiped Windows Phone, and Sign in with your Microsoft account.
    • Your Microsoft account will synchronise data with the device. It may take some time.
    • You’ll be prompted to restore your phone and be shown a list of backups available. Select the backup you want and tap Next.
    • Key in the security code from your account then tap Next.
    • Wait for the restoration to complete. Tap Next.
    • You’ll be asked to enter passwords for your email and social accounts. You can pap Skip to do it later and then tap Done.
    • To find your saved photos and videos – open the OneDrive app and sign in.
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