We receive numerous questions about how to delete Apple ID and passwords from iPhones. One of our readers asked us to help with this problem.
I bought a broken phone off eBay and fixed it. Then I had to get in touch with the owner, because her iCloud was still in it. I gave her the steps to follow on how to remove it from her account and she did. It’s still asking me for her Apple ID and passcode.
Sadly, several iPhone users face the same issue, leaving them with virtually unusable iPhones. In such a situation, there are possible hidden problems about your iPhone that you should know. Only then can you figure out the best approach to unlink the iPhone from the previous owner’s iCloud account.
Why You Have Problems Deleting an Apple ID and Password
Apple came up with the iCloud Activation Lock which functions as a security feature. Think of it as your email address and password; every time you want to access your email, you must provide details about your username and password. It works the same way; you need to enter your Apple ID and password to unlock the Activation Lock.
The problem comes when you bought a pre-owned iPhone online, and discover that the iPhone still has a link to the previous owner’s iCloud account. Sometimes, even asking the seller to unlink the iPhone from their iCloud does not work. Usually, it happens because of one of the following possible problems:
- The seller is not the original owner of the iPhone. Therefore, they may not have access to the iCloud account details required to delete your iPhone from the linked iCloud account.
- A Lost Mode or remote erase of the iPhone can prevent you from permanently unlocking the iPhone. The initial user can place the iPhone in Lost Mode and also delete its contents remotely through the iCloud site. Only the original user’s Apple ID and password can unlock such an iPhone to reactive it.
- The original owner might just have forgotten to unlink the iPhone from their iCloud account, or they have forgotten their Apple ID and password. There are instances when the initial owner no longer has access to the Apple ID (email) that they could use to recover these details.
In some instances, the iPhone could be a stolen or lost device which could explain why the original owner would erase its contents and place it in Lost Mode. It is still possible to unlock a stolen iPhone, depending on the particular situation.
How to Delete Apple ID and Passwords From iPhones
Once again, it helps to find out the precise reason why an iPhone has an iCloud Activation Lock. It helps to establish the best method to unlock your iPhone. Either way, you could try these three ways to delete Apple ID and passwords from iPhones.
#3 Get in Touch with the Original iPhone Owner
Firstly, you should understand that in most cases, the seller is not the original owner of the iPhone you bought online. Therefore, it might be difficult to get a hold of them after they sell and ship out the iPhone to you. However, in the instance that you can reach them, you could ask them to delete your iPhone from their iCloud account.
Most iPhone users who find themselves in this situation often find it difficult to get in touch with the original iPhone owner.
Also, through our comments section, we discovered some of the problems you may face with this option:
- The original owner might have since passed on, and therefore, it means you cannot reach out to them
- You do not have the contact details of the previous iPhone owner, which makes it difficult to contact them.
While you could try the refund option offered by sites such as eBay, at times the Activation Lock takes effect when it’s too late to use this option. If this does not work for you to get your iPhone unlocked, then try contacting Apple.
#2 Contact Apple Support to Delete Apple ID
Once again, this iCloud unlock method works only for a few iPhone users. It is the best option if you face either of the problems outlined above with contacting the original iPhone user.
You can email Apple support and explain your situation. Make sure to include every document you have that supports your case. Include proof of purchase and copies of emails showing that you tried to get in touch with the original iPhone owner unsuccessfully. After explaining the situation, you can ask them to delete the Apple ID linked to your iPhone.
Do not dismiss this option as a possible way to unlock your iPhone. In the case of a deceased original iPhone owner or any other difficulties reaching them; Apple support might help out with the situation.
#1 Get a Detailed Guide on How to Delete Apple IDs and Passwords
If you try the two options above and do not get the help you need, then you can find helpful information from the How to Legally Unlock iCloud Ebook. The detailed guide lets you know every step to take when trying to unlock your iPhone. Best yet, they give you templates to use when contacting the original owner and Apple support.
The most important information you’ll get from the Ebook is how to get the original owner’s contacts. As you know by now, you will need the previous iPhone user’s help to unlock your iCloud locked iPhone.
A Guide to Delete Apple ID and Passwords From iPhones
Now, if you find yourself in a situation like our reader, where you can contact the original owner to unlink your iPhone from their account, use the following guide:
Disable “Find My iPhone.”
Before anyone sells an iPhone, they should unlink the device from their iCloud account and most importantly, disable “Find My iPhone” on the device. When the feature is enabled, it triggers the Activation Lock which asks for the original owner’s Apple ID and password to unlock it.
To deactivate the Find My iPhone feature, go to Settings choose the iCloud option and then turn off the button that enables Find My iPhone.
Delete the Device from the iCloud Site
Next, the original owner needs to unlink the particular iPhone from their iCloud account. They can do it by going to the iCloud website and deleting it from their account. Follow the steps outlined to unlink an iPhone from your iCloud account:
Sign Out from All Apps Using your iCloud Credentials
You need to sign out from all apps that use your Apple credentials. It includes iTunes and the App store, which you can access from the iPhone’s settings. Repeat the process to log out of your iCloud account from the iPhone settings.
Often, these two places make use of the original iPhone owner’s iCloud credentials, and you need to unlink the information from the iPhone before selling it.
Erase the iPhone
Lastly, you need to erase the iPhone’s contents so that the new owner can set it up afresh. You can do it from Settings under General and then choose to Erase All Settings and Contents, and then follow it through with Reset All Settings just to be safe.
With this guideline, you can talk a seller through the process of deleting an Apple ID from your iPhone. Make sure to get this done before they ship the iPhone out to you. To be on the safe side, always make sure to look into the iPhone’s lock status to make sure that it does not have an iCloud lock.