My iPhone 5S was stolen and I used Find My iPhone App to remote wipe it. Can someone still jailbreak that phone and use it as a new phone?

  • 3
    The simplest answer is YES.
    – Ruskes
    Apr 3 '14 at 5:56
  • 2
    @Buscar웃 The simplest answer is NO.
    – user10355
    Aug 1 '14 at 7:36

Since iOS 7, Apple has employed Activation Lock. Once Find my iPhone has been enabled, the device is bound to the user's Apple ID and will require the username and password of that particular Apple ID to restore or activate.

Remote wipes put a lock on the device on top of clearing out the data. Once that phone is turned back on, a password will be required.

Activation Lock cripples iPhones for life (or till the user enters the Apple ID password).

The thief that has your device now has a brick and it will always be a brick. There is absolutely no bypassing Activation Lock because Apple's servers will chase it forever.

The only procedure left to the thief is to put the device in DFU mode, but once the restore is complete, the user will again be prompted for the Apple ID password upon setup. And since the device checks Apple's servers for this hold, the thief is left up a creak.

You can see on Apple's website what Activation Lock consists of:

With Activation Lock, your Apple ID and password are required before anyone can:

  • Turn off Find My iPhone on your device

  • Sign out of iCloud on your device

  • Erase and reactivate your device

Jailbreaking a device requires access to it. If it was that easy, Activation Lock would be useless. Apple is much smarter than that.

iPhone Hacks has a more in-depth look at the feature: Protect your iPhone against theft with Activation Lock


Physical Access is Total Control. This is the 100% truth on all things computing.

As soon as your phone is physically in someone else's hands, if the thief knows what they're doing they can get around anything.

I won't go into detail about how they can subvert a remote wipe, or more generally gain any level of access to your phone, but it's fairly straight forward and the feature exists on literally every single iPhone. (And I think identically even iPod Touch and iPad.)

The part of this I do NOT know the answer to, is the recent carrier activation security feature ( http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/10/phone-theft-activation-lock-apple-_n_3417032.html ). I believe the intended effect of this is that the thief would never be able to activate the phone with a cell service when the phone is wiped, in essence, reported lost/stolen.

While they may not be able to activate the phone, they can still gain access and read your data, assuming they took the phone offline before the Remote Wipe could take effect.

  • I'll add that if you go to the police with the EMEI number, they can block the phone and report use. Apr 3 '14 at 7:19
  • IMEI - en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IMEI Apr 3 '14 at 7:21
  • 1
    Right ! My coffee did not take effect... Apr 3 '14 at 7:35
  • Thansk for the response. When I remote wiped the phone, the phone was still online. So I think it might be a rookie. Hence I am confident that my data is safe because I tested that on my iPad and the only way I was able to login to my iPad after remote wipe was to do enter the user id and password that was used to wipe the account. What I am interested is that if now that phone can be jailbroken.
    – fahadahmed
    Apr 3 '14 at 21:43
  • 1
    @MacLemon Reasoning? I admit I don't actually know much of the details because I've never had to use it. And I don't want to wipe my phone to test it :P. May 27 '14 at 7:32

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