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One day my older Macbook Pro (which is now not in my hands) started asking for iCloud password with text "This Mac can't connect to iCloud because of a problem with mail@mail.com." but I kept postponing it. The device is running El Capitan.

The deal is I don't want the person who was the mac in their hands now (I'm not sure I had a log out after 5 minutes set to on) to read my messages and I was hoping that this would mean they simple would not receive them on the mac - because it kept asking for my iCloud password.

And a tiny subquestion #2 - can I check to see when was the device last logged in?

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If there was a problem with your iCloud account, and it was requesting your password, no, they shouldn't be able to read your messages.

However, to be sure, I would check with the current owner.

Always follow this guide before giving away your Mac.

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