How to take a data-safe approach to selling your devices

Apple iPad and iPhone

Data wasn’t something that normal people had to be concerned about in the past. Before the digital age and the rise of technology, it was easy to go through life without having to worry about having passwords or other information stolen from you. Over the last two decades, though, this has changed a lot.

The devices you use each day record a huge amount of information about you, from your social media logins to the photos that you take. This type of data is private, with most people working hard to make sure that their data is secure when they are using their phone, computer, and other devices. But what about when it comes to getting rid of your devices? Let’s take a look at some of the steps you should take when you’re working to keep your data private while selling your electronics.

Passwords & logins

Passwords can be a powerful tool when they are placed in the wrong hands, and it makes sense that you would work hard to keep this aspect of your digital life well-protected. While this may be the case, it is becoming increasingly common for the devices people use to collect and save passwords to make your life more convenient. There is nothing wrong with this in theory, with passwords being protected by encryption.

If you sell a device with passwords still saved, though, the next user may be able to access the websites, services, and applications you use. This makes it well worth making sure that your passwords are deleted from your devices when you sell them. Whether a computer, phone, or any other device, you should be able to remove passwords without too much work.

Photographs & videos

Photographs and video used to be quite expensive to produce, but this has changed in the age of smartphones. Most people have access to a high-quality camera in their pocket, and this leads to a lot of photos and videos being taken of your daily life. While not as sensitive as your passwords, most people won’t like the idea of their personal images being accessed by someone else. You can backup your photos and videos using a cloud data service before deleting them to ensure that you have them in the future.

Learning to go through this process is nice and easy. You can find out how to delete all photos from iPhone and Android devices with a couple of quick searches, giving you the chance to figure out what you need to do before you start working on getting your photos off of your device.


Apps used to be considered a novel thing, but now they are a part of everyday life for most people. The apps you use can be incredibly sensitive, with many people using their phones to handle things like banking. It is crucial that you don’t leave your phone logged in to any of the apps that you use. As time goes by, more and more apps are able to take payments and handle money, and this makes it especially important to think about this.

Removing apps can be a time-consuming process, and most people won’t want to go through it. Of course, though, this will be worth it to keep your devices clean when you sell them. This process will be easiest from within your phone’s settings, as this will give you a view of all of your apps at once.


Smartphones, laptops, and other digital devices can be crucial to modern workers. Using your device for work presents a range of security issues, with most companies forcing their employees to have passwords on their devices if they do work on them. Of course, though, this can also present an issue when it comes to selling the device you’ve been using for work. In some cases, you may even need to talk to your employer about this to make sure that you are allowed to get rid of the device without their oversight.

At the very least, you should manually log out of all of the work apps you use, uninstalling anything that shouldn’t be available to someone outside of work. This is particularly important if you have anything on your phone that hasn’t been released to the general public.

Other files

Most modern devices have plenty of storage space, and this makes them great for keeping a range of different files in order. Of course, though, this is another type of data that needs to be protected when a device is being sold. Much like your photos and videos, you should backup and delete files like this to make sure that they don’t fall into someone else’s hands.

Factory resets

Finally, as the last area to consider, it’s time to think about a way to accomplish all of this in one move. Most digital devices have an option that allows you to reset your device to the state that it left the factory in. This will wipe all of the data you have created, while also logging you out of everything. It would be wrong to say that this deletes all of your data entirely, with operating systems like Windows often saving files that you won’t want people to be able to access.

This makes it worth spending the time to test your factory reset once it has been performed. This will be easiest on computers, but you can plug devices like smartphones into your machine to view the files that are on it. Factory resets aren’t likely to fail, but it pays to make sure in a world where data can mean so much.

As you can see, selling your digital devices doesn’t have to be too tricky. You may have to do a little bit of work, but this will be worth it to make sure that you are able to keep your data safe when you sell the devices that mean so much to you. Of course, though, much of the work can be done for you when you use the right tools.

Originally publisher as How to take a data-safe approach to selling your devices
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