Cell Phones

Wiping a deceased persons phone - EDITED for solution

  • Last Updated:
  • Aug 10th, 2021 10:40 am
Tags:
[OP]
Jr. Member
User avatar
Jan 29, 2017
122 posts
97 upvotes
Mississauga, ON

Wiping a deceased persons phone - EDITED for solution

EDITED: Thanks for the input everyone. I spoke with a Samsung operator who confirmed that the only way to re-set it was at an authorized dealer with the death certificate. And of course, I have to pay to have it done. I appreciate all the help.


Back in March, my uncle passed away. It was quite sudden, and as next of kin, I've been taking care of his affairs. He had a Samsung Galaxy S10. I got stuck paying some of his bills, and I'd like to wipe it in order to sell it.

We weren't close. He really didn't have anyone he was close to. No one has his passwords for any of his accounts. His care worker was able to show me the swipe pattern to open the phone. But I can't wipe the phone without his passwords. I have to have his google account password in order to turn off some protection - I'm an Apple girl, so I have no idea how any of this stuff on Android works.

Samsung told me to take it to a mobileklinik to get it wiped. Mobileklinik won't do it without proof of ownership as mandated by Samsung. They say that since my uncle is deceased, I can't provide proof of ownership. And there are no passwords stored on the phone itself. I tried reaching Samsung on social media, but they're not responding. I want to send an email but there doesn't seem to be a customer service email - only emails specific to the model of phone.

I have the death certificate, and Bell has told me that the phone is mine to do with as I wish.

If anyone has any ideas on how I can deal with this, it would be so very much appreciated.
Last edited by Angellz on Aug 4th, 2021 11:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
8 replies
Deal Fanatic
Aug 27, 2004
7434 posts
881 upvotes
Toronto, ON
What happens if you unsuccessfully attempt to unlock the phone enough times? Many phones are set up so they'll wipe themselves after X failed attempts.
Newbie
Sep 23, 2016
89 posts
183 upvotes
If you can get into the phone, that’s good.

1. Try to reset the google account password by clicking forgot the password and reset password using email, depending on the security level, google will send you a link to reset the password which you should have access in his phone.

2. After password is changed, you can sign out of all accounts from the phone if it let’s you do so. If it doesn’t then no big deal.

3. Look up factory reset option, you should be able to reset the phone now since you have the google account password reset.

4. Once the factory reset is done, quickly setup the phone without sim and without any google account info just to make sure that phone was wiped properly, off everything looks good, perform another factory reset and you can do whatever you like to do with the device.

Hope this works.

If not Samsung store is the only best option to deal with since they’re the manufacturer of the Device.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Sep 10, 2005
4846 posts
2229 upvotes
GTA
Technically, as long as you're in the phone, you should be able to factory reset in the settings and factory reset protection should not kick in. However, removing all the accounts first might be a good idea, if that's what you're trying to do. I just don't remember if it requires the Google account password to do so.
Deal Guru
User avatar
Jun 27, 2004
13385 posts
2605 upvotes
Vancouver.bc.ca
Can't it be wiped with a firmware flash? Mind you, maybe the last non-paying option for someone not familiar with Android.
Deal Addict
Nov 30, 2016
1254 posts
1630 upvotes
Waterloo Region
Wiping the phone is the easy part. OP's point is that she needs to sell the phone and so has to "formally" log out of all the accounts before performing the factory reset.

If you've ever followed the Samsung/Android device trade-in program, you would be aware that if you do not sign out of all accounts before turning the phone in, the trade in usually gets rejected.

as JBee07 pointed out, try to change the passwords to the Samsung and Google accounts then log out of both and sign in.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Feb 12, 2008
4321 posts
265 upvotes
Toronto
Doesn't the recovery mode offer a factory reset option that wipes accounts on the phone anyways? I know Samsung has been pushing things differently with security compared to Google, but I don't know if that will still keep the account information intact.
Nothing to see here...keep looking.
Member
Apr 20, 2011
356 posts
63 upvotes
Toronto
You need to check if he has enabled device protection in the phone or not. If it has enabled then any "hacky" ways that you will use to wipe the phone will lock the phone to the google account. Which means that even after formatting the phone etc, you would need his gmail account to setup it as a new device. (there are ways to bypass this but not sure on which android version the phone is and which ways are working now a days).
Sr. Member
Dec 22, 2007
970 posts
593 upvotes
Mississauga
Angellz wrote: EDITED: Thanks for the input everyone. I spoke with a Samsung operator who confirmed that the only way to re-set it was at an authorized dealer with the death certificate. And of course, I have to pay to have it done. I appreciate all the help.


Back in March, my uncle passed away. It was quite sudden, and as next of kin, I've been taking care of his affairs. He had a Samsung Galaxy S10. I got stuck paying some of his bills, and I'd like to wipe it in order to sell it.

We weren't close. He really didn't have anyone he was close to. No one has his passwords for any of his accounts. His care worker was able to show me the swipe pattern to open the phone. But I can't wipe the phone without his passwords. I have to have his google account password in order to turn off some protection - I'm an Apple girl, so I have no idea how any of this stuff on Android works.

Samsung told me to take it to a mobileklinik to get it wiped. Mobileklinik won't do it without proof of ownership as mandated by Samsung. They say that since my uncle is deceased, I can't provide proof of ownership. And there are no passwords stored on the phone itself. I tried reaching Samsung on social media, but they're not responding. I want to send an email but there doesn't seem to be a customer service email - only emails specific to the model of phone.

I have the death certificate, and Bell has told me that the phone is mine to do with as I wish.

If anyone has any ideas on how I can deal with this, it would be so very much appreciated.
a loss is a loss so sorry to hear. First of try to get the money you paid for service back as it should of stopped the day of his death. Don't pay anyone anything other than funeral after he passed.

for the phone how much is it worth to go through all the trouble. if you dont care for it sell it as-is let someone else figure it out or

Top