How to properly clear your devices before selling them

Reporter: Corey Lazar
Published: Updated:
Photo via Consumer Reports

A quick way to make cash during the holidays is to sell some of your old devices, but if you don’t delete all your information the correct way, you could put yourself in danger.

One local person, Eric Decker, sells his devices online all the time, but he says he is aware of the risk.

Everything he has ever done on the device could be exposed if not cleaned out completely.

“I go through a clearing process and make sure there is no information on them,” Decker said.

But how do you know if you really erased everything?

Ray Leventhal, with  data recovery company, CPR Tools, shows us how to wipe the device clean to save your identity.

“Take the device and perform a full factory reset on it. Go through all the steps,” Leventhal said.

If you have an Apple product, go to Settings, then to General, hit Reset, then select Erase Call Content and Setting. Then select Back-Up and Erase.

It will ask for your password, and confirm again that you really want to erase all of your device.

If you have a droid phone, press Settings, then General Management, and finally press Resest.

“Look at contacts…they should be empty. Look at photo gallery, it should also be empty,” Leventhal said.

There is one more step that is crucial, especially if you are selling an Apple product.

Go online to your Apple ID manager page and find the device you are selling. Press Remove From Account.

For more information on how to clear your Apple Devices, go to the Apple ID page here.

For information on clearing your Android device, you can find that information here.

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