Apple Sued for Wiping iPhone Data at Genius Bar

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Apple has a new lawsuit on its hands, but this time it isn't for patent infringement. Instead, it's over lost data when a customer failed to backup their iPhone before taking it to the Genius Bar for tech support.

London man sues Apple over lost iPhone dataDeric White filed the lawsuit after taking his iPhone to the London Regent Street Apple Store for tech support. He said he received text messages saying there was a problem with his iPhone 5, so he turned to the Genius Bar staff for help.

Apple's staff fixed the problem by restoring his iPhone, but since Mr. White hadn't backed up his data, his contacts and honeymoon photos were all lost. He claims the Genius Bar staff didn't confirm he had a backup before wiping his phone.

Apple's standard routine is to ask customers if they have a backup before performing any action that could wipe their data. Mr. White claims in this case that didn't happen.

Mr. White is suing Apple for £5,000 (about US$7,522) so he can take his wife on a second honeymoon and snap photos to replace the shots he lost.

Apple's response to Mr. White's claim is that "The claimant has not demonstrated how suffered any loss," according to The Sun.

While losing his contacts and honeymoon photos is sad, Apple isn't responsible for backing up our data. That's our own responsibility, and one that Mr. White failed to meet.

Mr. White is facing off against Apple on Monday in a London court. Regardless of the outcome, hopefully he now understands why he needs to backup his iPhone regularly.

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Apple isn't responsible for the data on our iPhones, iPads, or Macs. Taking Apple to court because you didn't back up your iPhone seems more like trying to avoid taking responsibility for an avoidable mistake.

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It isn’t like Apple could make it any easier to back up your data.
What a twit.


Why is everyone against this guy? Apple’s policy is to ask, they did not, they deleted a customer’s data. The customer is always right. This sounds like Apple’s bad to me. Sure, the guy could have been smarter about it, but not everybody is tech savvy enough to know that the Genius Bar guys might wipe the phone in an irreversible sort of way. From this guy’s perspective they deleted his irreplaceable data without any warning.

I don’t think Apple should lose a lawsuit necessarily, but I do think they should apologize and do SOMETHING to make it up to this guy. At least he’s only asking for a few thousand instead of some ridiculous millions.

Apple’s response makes it sound like they don’t believe him when he says his photos were lost, or that they don’t think that’s a big deal.

Dean Lewis

Having worked in several retail jobs, I can attest that the customer is NOT always right. Sometimes they are mistaken. Sometimes they are outright liars. In this case, the man could be misremembering if he was actually asked if he had a backup or he could be blatantly lying after realizing waving his hand and saying, “Yeah, yeah, whatever” ended up with him losing his stuff. I expect the case will come down to who-said-what-and-when and the guy might get a small settlement if Apple feels nice.

Whatever the case may be, this will likely end up with people having to sign a long, tiny print statement before anything proceeds at the Genius Bar now (if they don’t already do that anyway—I had to do so at the Microsoft store before they worked on some Surfaces I took to them).


Spot on.
My guess is the Genius likely asked him and the guy replied “Yeah sure whatever.” without realizing what he was asked.

“The customer is always right” is a saying spouted by people that never had to deal with customers.


Perhaps Apple should, in their wisdom and ability to protect us from ourselves, make it policy to back up any portable device that they deem needs restoring. It is slightly different with a full computer, but I would suggest that less than half of iPhone users actually back up their phone on a regular basis.


Bigfoot, that would severely slow things down at already-very-busy Apple Stores. Given iCloud and PC backup options, this is not very difficult. Back up your device. Period. Next, this bozo will travel with his wife on a second honeymoon, drop his iPhone in the toilet at the airport on the way home, lose his photos again, and sue for a third trip!!


We don’t know all the details of this guy’s situation, but I’m basically sympathetic.

It would be one thing if Apple “geniuses” told you they were about to wipe your device before they did it, but they don’t. It happened to me.

Did the genius at the Shadyside Pittsburgh Apple store give me an option? No. Said genius took the phone, said “Let me have a look.” fiddled with this, fiddled with that and then wiped it clean.

I do keep my i-devices backed up. Would I have wanted to do a full backup right before my iPhone got wiped? Hell yes.

Apple should make it their policy to make it very, very clear what they have in mind and the repercussions and then give the customer the choice to go home do a backup and then return

This costs Apple nothing. If the customer wants to do the backup, it costs neither Apple nor their customer no additional time in the store. If the customer agrees to let the device be wiped, so be it.

Customer in charge of their data, not Apple in charge of customer’s data.


Surprising loss for Apple on this one. If these photos were so precious then I’m surprised this bloke ever took the phone out of the house.

Apple doesn’t really do paper forms, so I imagine you’ll now have to sign an iPad with your finger when they take the phone off you.


Apple could and should turn this into a teachable moment.

Although Apple is clearly not at fault in this case they should not only pay for the return honeymoon and hire a professional photographer to capture the moment on an iPhone 6s but also co-opt this gentleman into a series of commercials teaching the value of preparing for the inevitable moment when bad things happen to good people using Apple technology to do so.

This way Apple comes out the shining star without admitting any wrongdoing and this gentleman turns from an aggressor against Apple to a lqife long advocate for Apple.

The tagline for the commercial could be “every once in a while you need to make an exception.”

William Wales

I really sympathize with Deric White. Even though he wins £1.2k compensation from Apple, the honeymoon photos and contacts are not be recovered. I can understand him well,  pictures from his £7,500 honeymoon and the details of contacts is vital to him. Lost him , just like memories gone.

However, I want to know how had it all been erased when Apple staff reset the phone to factory settings. Why not back up important data on iCloud or iTunes in advance? Besides, there are some professional data recovery software, like iMyfone Data Recovery for iPhone, which is designed to recover lost or erased files. Why not to try variious ways?

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