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Man sues Apple for "wiping his life" after store deletes years of data from his iPhone

By midian182 · 47 replies
Nov 30, 2015
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  1. A UK man is suing Apple for £5000 ($7506) after one of the company’s stores wiped photos of his honeymoon and 15 years worth of contacts from his phone while it was in for repairs.

    Deric White, 68, from London, took his iPhone 5 into the Regent Street Apple store after receiving a text message saying there was a fault with the handset. White says that after staff returned the phone to him saying it was “sorted,” he realized all his pictures, videos and contacts had been wiped from the device. He claims that it was at this point when the staff asked if he had backed up his data.

    “My life was saved on that phone. I lost my favorite video of a giant tortoise biting my hand on honeymoon in the Seychelles,” White told the Sun. “It was only after staff fiddled around they asked if I’d backed my things up.”

    He told the newspaper that he and his wife began crying when they realized all the photos and videos of their honeymoon had been deleted. White will face Apple’s legal team in a London court today, with District Judge Fine set to hear both sides of the case. In court papers, Apple says: “The claimant has not demonstrated how he has suffered any loss.”

    The outcome of the case will likely rest on whether the Apple Store staff really did tell White to back up his data only after they handed the wiped phone back to him. If he is successful in the trial, White has vowed to take his wife on a second honeymoon.

    Permalink to story.

  2. hopgop1

    hopgop1 TS Booster Posts: 166   +33

    Has he not once backed up to iCloud or to a computer? I find that hard to believe...
    TheDreams and mojorisin23 like this.
  3. So it's Apple's fault that he is too stupid to back up his data.
  4. ikesmasher

    ikesmasher TS Evangelist Posts: 3,045   +1,377

    I think many of us techies here find it easy to forget how little the consumer worries about their devices. For us its commonplace to backup data but he really should have been told to before hand. Not that im siding with a lawsuit...
    DAOWAce and Skidmarksdeluxe like this.
  5. Camikazi

    Camikazi TS Evangelist Posts: 972   +319

    It should be standard practice to ask if a person who backed up their information before doing ANYTHING on a device. I have been asking this to people who ask me to look at their phones, laptops or desktops for years now. Not everyone is as tech savvy as the people here are and they might not even know about it (I have friends who didn't), it has nothing to do with being stupid but with not being informed about it. Also, the *****s at the Apple store should have asked BEFORE they wiped it and not after, thought I should restate that.
  6. Every time someone wants me to fiddle with their computer I always tell them that everything on that computer will be lost; photos, vids, docs, web favorites - everything. That usually gets them to at least think. Then they usually ask something like will I still have such and such saved...NO you will not! back it up first.
    jobeard likes this.
  7. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,283

    We really don't know who's fault it is. Did Apple's staff ask him if his device was backed up? They're bound to swear that they did. I think this will become a case of he said, she said and this old geezer will most likely walk away empty handed.
    Apples team of slick, shady, greasy, overpaid mouthpieces will have just too much firepower to overwhelm the complainant.
    treetops likes this.
  8. kuroiei

    kuroiei TS Enthusiast Posts: 93   +31

    Same here - whenever I operate on any laptop or PC I always ask and inform that the data may be wiped and do they want me to manually save it. Even if they say no I take a minute to investigate and back up anything I deem crucial or important for about a weeks time. Not doing this is pretty irresponsible.
    madboyv1 likes this.
  9. Whatswithpeople

    Whatswithpeople TS Rookie

    Some people had too much stuffs that they can't back up to the iCloud so they ignored it and they have to buy more space to save it. Like me everything was backed up and I had to buy more spaces to fit all my stuffs it's also the Apple should give us more spaces but they're too f.....ng cheap to give us when we pay a lot of money for their products . Yes the store should always us the customers before they clean up their phone and all those stuffs he has are important too also he should back up something.
  10. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,348   +1,130

    I've been to that exact store and had my iPhone repaired because of a defective camera and I know exactly how this goes...

    1. You book an appointment with a genius
    2. You get a confirmation email of your time, date and TO BACKUP YOUR DATA BEFORE ARRIVAL
    3. You arrive, genius takes your phone
    4. You come back to the store, pay and take your phone

    He simply ignored his email that said to backup your data before arrival...

    Also, when you hand your phone over they ask you to turn off find my iPhone so they can do the repairs, when they ask that, EVERY time I have been to an Apple Store, at that point they ask if you've backed up your iPhone as they may have to wipe the phone depending on the repair...
  11. RobertM

    RobertM TS Rookie

    I agree that Apple's team will overwhelm him, but I doubt that they would care about a small amount like £5000. That is pocket change to Apple. The only way I can see them spending a decent amount of time on this would be to make a point to the public.
    ikesmasher likes this.
  12. anguis

    anguis TS Enthusiast Posts: 85   +12

    Unfortunately bwe don't know when he was asked about his data or whether he signed or agreed to any paperwork. Therefore we can't determine the fault online. Let the court decide.
  13. Reetin

    Reetin TS Rookie

    15 Years worth of contacts? Surely he has those saved somewhere. The iPhones have not been around for 15 years so at some point he had to migrate them over to his phone.
    TheDreams likes this.
  14. ikesmasher

    ikesmasher TS Evangelist Posts: 3,045   +1,377

    Or maybe the techie at the store did it for him like they usually do...
  15. madboyv1

    madboyv1 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,517   +408

    Notwithstanding the date range, I do the same thing whenever I'm going to do major updates/software tossups on a computer. People also like to save their passwords in the built in managers for their browsers and I always warn people that they'll be deleted before continuing.
    kuroiei likes this.
  16. treetops

    treetops TS Evangelist Posts: 2,253   +351

    The same thing would have happened if he dropped it in the toilet. It probably comes down the legal agreement he likely signed before giving them the phone.
  17. CrisisDog

    CrisisDog TS Booster Posts: 140   +33

    I believe the electronic document you have to sign with your finger, before turning your device over to Apple, also has this listed for legal purposes.
  18. damnthereaper

    damnthereaper TS Enthusiast Posts: 44

    Either way it looks like he was able to win about $1800 out of it, which is appropriate but this is possibly opening the floodgates on more suits likes this which could lead to some Con games being run for quick cash.
  19. DjKraid

    DjKraid TS Guru Posts: 542   +27

    I know the feeling when a company just clears a phone like that, happened to me once too when drunk me changed the security code and couldn't remember it the next day. However all I lost was like all my contacts and codes stored in the phones "wallet". Stores even clear out phones when the customers tells them not to, for example when a display got replaced to an old Samsung Galaxy 'they' thought that it was good to flash the phone at the same time even tho the customer had told them not to. I was the one who got the complaint call from that, it was rather ugly (worked as customer support for the company back then).
    Anyhow, these days people have everything on the phones and only a fool would think a phone "is forever", they will eventually die, break or get stolen in which case all is lost too. I find it very hard to believe that he didn't have any backups or anything anywhere.
  20. trgz

    trgz TS Addict Posts: 254   +68

    I've forgotten about him already...
  21. midian182

    midian182 TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 4,052   +26

    Just to give people a quick update on this: Deric won the case, and Apple has been ordered to pay him £1200 ($1810) in compensation and £773 ($1166) in court costs.
  22. NicktheWVAHick

    NicktheWVAHick TS Addict Posts: 136   +107

    So if I leave my car unlocked and it is stolen that's Ford's fault. If I leave my stove on and my house burns down that's KitchenAids fault. If I kill my wife with a gun that is Smith & Wesson's fault. I think I am finally understanding how all this works now.....
  23. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,283

    I like it. You can't hurt Apple financially but you can somewhat embarrass them publicly.
  24. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,283

    Not if you own a Chevy vehicle, a GE stove and a Colt 45 Peacemaker. ;)
  25. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,917   +3,293

    Stop being so melodramatic. Stop stating the obvious. This is the "me" generation. Nobody is responsible for anything they do.

    In fact it's your fault I had to make this post to explain that to you...:p

    More than 50 years ago, when I first, (hopefully), attained the ability to reason abstractly, you could have never convinced me that people could possibly be as stupid as they are today, without centuries of direct brother/sister inbreeding. I was dead wrong.:D

    A final 'thought'. Have we really gotten to the point where the only copy of our wedding photos is on our phones?
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2015
    toxicfiend likes this.

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