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How to Wipe iPhone Before Selling?

Are you planning to sell your iPhone and worried about your data? This guide will walk you through the essential steps to wipe your iPhone before selling, ensuring your personal information remains secure. Your device can be hassle-free and safe if you follow the right procedures. 

How to Wipe iPhone Before Selling?

Whether upgrading to a new model or just looking for extra cash, wiping your iPhone properly is crucial. Read on to learn how to erase all your data effectively and reset your device to its factory settings before handing it over to a new owner.

Why Should I Wipe My iPhone Before Selling It? 

Wiping your iPhone before selling it is crucial to safeguard your personal information and maintain data privacy. Using your iPhone stores a wealth of personal data, including contacts, messages, emails, photos, and sensitive information like passwords and financial details. If this information falls into the wrong hands, it could lead to identity theft or other forms of fraud. 

Learning to clear your iPhone before selling is essential to prevent such security risks. Additionally, clearing your data ensures the new owner can start fresh with the device as a standard courtesy and security measure. This simple action protects your privacy and secures your digital footprint from potential misuse.

What Should I Do Before Starting the Wiping Process?

Before you begin wiping your iPhone, it’s important to take several preparatory steps to ensure your data is secure and your device is ready for a smooth transition to its new owner. 

Here are the essential actions you should take:

  1. Backup Your Data: Back up all the important information stored on your device. You can back up your iPhone using iCloud or iTunes to save your photos, videos, contacts, and other personal data.
  2. Remove Your SIM Card: Your SIM card contains your phone number and other carrier information. Remove it to avoid accidentally giving away your cellular data to the new owner.
  3. Unpair Devices: If you have devices paired with your iPhone, such as an Apple Watch or Bluetooth headphones, unpair them. This prevents the new owner from accessing these devices.
  4. Sign Out of Apple ID and iCloud: Ensure you are signed out of your Apple ID, iCloud, iTunes, and App Store accounts. This step is critical to prevent the new owner from accessing your personal account information.
  5. Disable ‘Find My iPhone’: Turn off ‘Find My iPhone’, part of iCloud. This feature must be deactivated before you erase your device.
  6. Remove Any Personal Accounts: Log out of all your accounts on apps and websites to ensure that no personal information remains accessible on the device.

How Do I Back Up My iPhone Data?

Using iCloud:

  1. Connect to Wi-Fi: Ensure your iPhone is connected to a Wi-Fi network before starting the backup.
  2. Open Settings: Go to the Settings app on your iPhone.
  3. Access iCloud Settings: Tap on your name/profile at the top of the settings menu to access your Apple ID settings, then tap “iCloud.”
  4. iCloud Backup: Scroll down and select “iCloud Backup.”
  5. Start Back-up: Make sure that iCloud Back-up is turned on, and tap “Back Up Now.” Stay connected to your Wi-Fi network until the process completes.
  6. Verify Backup: To check that the backup finished successfully, go back to “Settings,” tap on [your name] > iCloud > iCloud Storage > Manage Storage, and then select your device. The backup should appear in the details with the time and backup size.

Using iTunes:

  1. Update iTunes: Ensure you have the latest version of iTunes installed on your computer.
  2. Connect Your iPhone: Use your USB cable to connect your iPhone to your computer. Follow the onscreen steps if asked for your device passcode or to Trust This Computer.
  3. Open iTunes: If your iPhone does not automatically appear, click on the device icon in the top left corner of the iTunes window.
  4. Start Backup: Under the “Backups” section, check the box for “This computer.” Then, click “Back Up Now” to start the backup to your computer. You can also check “Encrypt iPhone backup” for a more secure backup that includes your saved passwords and other sensitive data.
  5. Verify Backup: Once the backup is complete, you can see the date and time of your last iTunes backup under the “Backups” section.

How Can I Sign Out of Apple ID and iCloud?

To sign out of your Apple ID and iCloud on your iPhone:

  • Go to Settings and tap on your name at the top. 
  • Scroll down and select “Sign Out.” 
  • When prompted, enter your Apple ID password to turn off “Find My iPhone” and choose what data you want to keep on the device.
  • Finally, tap “Sign Out” again to confirm. This ensures that your personal information is removed from the iPhone before you sell it.

What Steps Are Involved in Erasing My iPhone? 

Erasing your iPhone completely is vital in protecting your privacy, especially before selling your device. Here’s how to wipe your iPhone before selling it, restoring it to its factory settings:

  1. Backup Your Data: Before starting, ensure you’ve backed up all important data because this process will erase everything.
  2. Sign Out of Apple ID and iCloud: Go to Settings, tap on your name at the top, scroll down, and tap “Sign Out.” Enter your Apple ID password and follow the prompts to turn off the activation lock.
  3. Turn Off ‘Find My iPhone’: Ensure that ‘Find My iPhone’ is turned off in the iCloud settings.
  4. Navigate to General Settings: Back in the Settings menu, scroll down and select “General.”
  5. Reset Your iPhone: At the bottom of the General settings page, you’ll find “Reset”; tap it, then choose “Erase All Content and Settings.”
  6. Enter Passcode: If prompted, enter your device’s passcode. Confirm that you want to erase everything by tapping “Erase Now.”
  7. Wait for Erasure: Your iPhone will take a few minutes to reset. Once done, it will restart like a new phone, with no data or personal information.

How Do I Ensure My iPhone Is Cleaned Properly After Wiping?

After you’ve wiped your iPhone’s data, ensuring it’s physically clean and presentable can make it more appealing to potential buyers. Here’s how to clean your iPhone properly before selling:

  1. Gather Supplies: Use a soft, lint-free cloth—microfiber is ideal. Avoid paper towels or abrasive cloths, which can scratch the surface. Have isopropyl alcohol (70% solution) and distilled water handy.
  2. Power Down: Before cleaning, power off the iPhone to avoid accidental inputs and reduce the risk of damage.
  3. Clean the Surface: Lightly dampen your cloth with water or an equal mix of water and isopropyl alcohol. Wipe the front and back of the iPhone gently. Avoid getting moisture in any openings.
  4. Detailing: Use a dry cotton swab or toothpick wrapped in a cloth to clean around the camera lenses, buttons, and charging port. Be careful not to insert anything into the ports.
  5. Disinfect: To disinfect, you can use a 70% isopropyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes. Gently wipe the non-porous surfaces of your iPhone, avoiding penetration around any openings.
  6. Dry the iPhone: After cleaning, wipe down the entire device with a dry microfiber cloth to remove any lingering moisture.
  7. Inspect and Polish: Check your device for any smudges or streaks, and polish it with a clean cloth.
  8. Protect the iPhone: If you still have the original or spare case, place the iPhone in it to keep it clean and protected until it is sold.


In conclusion, properly wiping your iPhone before selling is essential for protecting your personal data and ensuring the device is new for the next owner. Following these comprehensive steps—from backing up data to physically cleaning the iPhone—will make the selling process smooth and secure.

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