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How to Remove Find My iPhone Activation Lock without Previous Owner

Suppose you ordered an iPhone online from another country and you received it with a Find My iPhone activation lock. In that case, you have two options: return it for a refund or try to activate it without the help of the previous owner.

You may think returning it to a refund is the best option until you find yourself in a similar scenario. Truth be told, it’s never easy trying to remove an activation lock from an iPhone without the previous owner, but trying to get a refund over a used iPhone you bought on eBay with an activation lock.

In this article, you’ll learn how to remove Find My iPhone activation lock without previous owner. Since the processes are difficult, prepare to learn plenty of technical jargon.

What Does Find My iPhone Activation Lock Mean?

Activation Lock is the feature of the Find My on any iPhone that has a linked iCloud account. This lock prevents a thief from accessing the data on a stolen iPhone without explicit content from the owner, which they almost certainly would never get.

Without the account details of the former user of the iPhone, the device will remain stuck in the activation lock screen. Automatically, the easiest way to remove this restriction from an iPhone is by getting the former user to unlock the iPhone and link their iCloud account.

While this feature deterred thieves from attempting to steal data from iPhones, some legitimate buyers suffer. If you’re buying your iPhone from someone with little technical know-how, there are low chances that they’ll wipe the iPhone. If they do not wipe the iPhone, you’ll need to deal with this activation lock shortly after purchase.

Fortunately, there are certain ways to deal with this activation lock on an iPhone or iPad, some of which are free, and the others paid. However, it’s important to note that there is currently no way to bypass the activation lock without losing all the data on the iPhone.

Thus, if you’re doing this because you forgot the login details on an old iPhone, you should also prepare to lose all of your sensitive data. Also, it’s probably too late to try backing anything up as you can’t even get into the iPhone, no thanks to the lock.

How to Remove Find My iPhone Activation Lock without Previous Owner

Now that you’re aware of the reason the activation lock exists on your iPhone, you should probably attempt to remove it using any way possible. You may do it for free, while you’ll require paid software in most instances.

With that said, here are some of the most creative ways to remove the Find My iPhone activation lock.

  • Ask for the details

While this article should teach you how to remove it without the previous owner, it’s just important to add this step. The only failsafe way to remove the activation lock from any iPhone at the moment is by asking the previous owner to supply you with the details to unlock the iPhone.

There are many reasons you should consider this option before trying to unlock your iPhone all by yourself. First, asking the previous owner for the details won’t cost you a dime, as you can simply put a call across to receive the details via text. That way, you can easily bypass the lock without having to pay an arbitrary software company.

Also, asking the previous owner will enable you to regain access to the iPhone without deleting every piece of information from the device. There are cases where the previous owner of a device contacted the buyer to ask for the possibility of regaining certain data; you won’t want to disappoint.

  • Remove the activation lock via DNS

This option is very technical and has many limitations. However, it’s also one of the best options to try since you don’t have to pay a dime to remove the activation lock using this method. No guarantee altering the DNS settings will unlock the iPhone, since it works selectively.

Also, this DNS option doesn’t work on iPhones running the most recent versions of iOS. It’s only a recommended option when trying to remove the activation lock on an outdated iPhone of which you can’t remember the details on the iCloud account on it.

The last disadvantage of DNS unlock puts off most people is the fact that it’s not a permanent lock. As soon as you restart your device, the activation lock will reappear, making this a temporary solution to the problem.

  • Contact Apple Support

If you bought the phone from a reputable supplier with acceptable proof of purchase, the best way to remove the Find My iPhone activation lock without the previous owner might be to contact Apple. Apple can remove the lock from their computers if you can do enough to convince them you own the device.

Before proceeding to contact Apple Support, ensure you have the serial number of the iPhone, the receipt from the seller, and an AppleCare agreement number. With these, you can contact Apple, provide these details, and remove the activation lock from your iPhone pretty easily.

Also, Apple may decide not to unlock your device, even after you provide them with every information they asked for. But since Apple Support is free, consider the option before trying to schedule a return and refund with the seller.

READ MORE: How To Get Rid Of Some Else’s Apple ID On Apple Watch

READ MORE: How To Remove Activation Lock On Apple Watch Without Apple ID


Buying a used iPhone is a lot of trouble, especially when you can’t contact the previous owner directly. If you’re in a similar scenario, you must remove the activation lock without contacting the previous owner.

If you really can’t contact the previous owner, then your options are limited. You can either contact Apple Support or use DNS unlocking, which isn’t very reliable. If you used the DNS option, the activation lock will return after each restart, which is still very problematic.

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