How to Remotely Delete Data for iPhone and Android Devices

Dec 9, 2017
How To

As mobile phones carry a significant amount of private data including message history and details, photos, and other confidential information, losing a phone can be damaging in terms of a financial loss and intellectual property. For this reason, several different tools and methods have been designed to alleviate the damage associated with losing a mobile phone in terms of being able to remotely erase the data. As this can be extremely useful, especially if the content that is stored on the phone is confidential, this article discusses how users can delete their phone data no matter where it is.

Apple Devices

In order to remotely delete the data on iPhones, the first thing users need to do is to log into their iCloud account on a desktop computer and then go into the Find My iPhone icon which is the same for the mobile version. Upon clicking this link, users have various options such as to track the iPhone/iPad or to erase the data that is on the phone. If tracking and locating the device is not a possible option, users can then resort to clicking the “Erase Data” button in order to factory restart the phone from wherever they are. For this reason, it is highly recommended that users frequently back up their device on iTunes so that they have a copy of the phone data in case it is ever lost. Furthermore, setting up the Find My iPhone app can help to increase the chances of finding the device so that it can be retrieved or located instead of having to delete the data.

Android Devices

Similarly to Apple devices, the process of remotely wiping the data from Android phones can be done through a desktop website. In order to enable the device to be factory restarted remotely, users must first activate this setting on the phone. In order to do so, go into Google Settings (different than the settings app) -> Android Device Manager -> select Allow Remote Lock. By checking this box, users can then remotely delete all of the content on their device as well as locate the phone via GPS if it is missing. After this box is checked, the security features need to be enabled which can be done by going into the Settings app -> Security -> Phone Administrator -> and then checking Android Device Manager. After this is done, going to the Android Device Manager website and logging in with the credentials for that device will enable various actions to take place such as locating the device, ringing the phone, or erasing all of the stored data.

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As a way to ensure that confidential information that is stored on the mobile phone does not get accessed by others even if the phone is missing, the methods outlined in this article are able to provide the last barrier of security in terms of deleting the mobile data. For this reason, it is important to take proactive measures such as placing a lock on the phone and enabling the features that allow for remote access to the device. In being able to wipe the phones memory remotely, even if the device is missing, the data cannot be compromised or accessed.

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Kevin Chau

Following my passion in the realm of business and entrepreneurship, I am always eager to develop skills that enable me to learn, build, and grow. My previous projects, both academic and personal, reflect my dedication towards expanding and applying my theoretical knowledge for practical results in these fields.

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