How to bypass the Activation Lock in iPad and iPhone


So you’ve bought your Apple device from a friend or an online platform, and it now requires you to sign in to iCloud. You realize the phone is unusable in this current situation, and you’re trying to find a way to bypass the activation lock.
Throughout this article, you will learn what an activation lock is and how you can bypass this security feature. You will also learn what to do before making the final payment on your used Apple device.

Understanding the Activation Lock

Apple’s activation lock was introduced as an antitheft mechanism for iOS 7 and any consequent operating system versions. So, the original owner of the phone or iPad needs to authorize any secondary user’s attempt to erase, reset or modify any data on the devices. This feature requires any user to have an account with Apple and use their Apple ID and password to log in to the iCloud.

In the event of theft, the activation lock allows you to manage all the data in your account. And have full control of it to protect sensitive information and any data that you may consider private.

The Activation Lock is an excellent idea, except when you buy your iPhone or iPad used and you realize the seller didn’t deactivate the feature for you. To strengthen the anti-theft feature, Apple connected the activation lock with Find My iPhone. It is a security feature that helps you track your phone’s location at all times.

Is my iPhone or Activation Locked?

How to bypass the Activation Lock in iPad and iPhone

The easiest way to realize that your device’s activation is locked is by seeing the prompt for an Apple username and password after starting the device.

What to do Before Purchasing a Used iDevice

  1. Before purchasing any used apple device, ensure that it isn’t locked. If locked, don’t buy the phone until the original owner unlocks it for you.
  2. Confirm that the IMEI number of the device isn’t reported as stolen. You can do this by going to the TAC database, where you can enter your IMEI number and your device’s serial number. And you can get information on whether your phone is blacklisted or not.

How to bypass the activation lock on iPhone or iPad

1.      Ask the Original Owner of the iPhone for their iCloud User Credentials

How to bypass the Activation Lock in iPad and iPhone

If you buy an Apple device and realize that you can’t unlock it, ask the previous owner to unlock it for you. The steps to unlock the devices are pretty much the same. This may be an information security hazard since they will be giving you access to their data, and some may not agree. So, give them an option of a physical meet-up to deactivate the activation lock.

  1. Switch on your device, and a pop-up will appear, prompting you to enter the Apple ID password.
  2. When the iDevice has finished initializing its processes, you will need to disable the Activation lock feature.
    • For iPads and iPhones running on iOS 10.3 or  consequent versions, Go to Settings> Locate the username on the screen> Sign out
    • Enter the Apple ID password again and click “Turn Off”
    • For any device using older iOS versions, Go to Settings> iCloud> Sign out. You’ll be required to enter the Apple ID password and then click “Delete from my iPhone.”
  3. Go to General> Reset> Erase all content and settings and restart the iPhone or iPad. This takes the device back to the factory settings, and the activation lock will be disabled.

Did the Original Owner Forget the Password to their iCloud?

Let them sign in and click “Forgot password”. This will prompt them to answer the security questions they chose when setting up the devices, and they can then change the passwords.

How to bypass the Activation Lock in iPad and iPhone

2.      Contact Apple’s Customer Service

This is the simplest way of saving yourself the hassle of finding the Apple password. This method is especially useful for people who have bought their iPhones from another user and have all the necessary legal documentation to prove ownership. Remember that the customer service official chooses to vouch for you when they decide to help you pass through the activation code.

To ease the customer care representative from any legal loopholes, you need to produce:

a). Proof of Purchase

The proof of purchase will come in several forms, including; the receipt that you got after buying the property. The receipt should provide when you slept and where.

b). Proof of Ownership

This is any documentation that shows who you are and where you bought your device. It could be an email or iMessage from the original owner confirming receipt of the money transferred from the purchase of the phone.

3.      Use DNS to Bypass the Activation Lock

This is a temporary method of bypassing the Apple security system using a WiFi network. Instead of using iOS on your Apple device, you bypass it using a server that allows you into social media and any other smart features.


How to bypass the Activation Lock in iPad and iPhone
  1. Ensure your WiFi is on and that you know the SSID and password to it.
  2. Switch on your Apple device and begin the setup process.
  3. During the process, when its time to set up the WiFi network on your device, click “i” next to your WiFi
  4. Go to Configure DNS > Manual > Add Server and enter the server address of your location
    • USA’s address is
    • For Europe, type
    • Asia countries use
    • The rest of the world uses
  5. Go Back> Choose your Wifi> Login using the correct credentials, then click “Join”
  6. Your Apple device will try opening a new screen, intercept it by hitting the Back button to remain on the WiFi page.
  7. When the login process is complete, you will get a Bypass notification.

Final Thoughts

You have learned three methods of bypassing the Activation lock on your iPad or iPhone. Please note that security features get upgrades all the time, and each company has a dedicated team that recognizes loopholes and fixes them. The best way to ensure you have no problem when purchasing a used Apple device is by confirming that the previous owner has reset your device even before the final transactions are made. Ensure that you aren’t buying a phone that’s reported stolen. Also, make sure you have proper legal documentation to prove ownership of the device.

What do you think?

Written by Nudrat Naheed

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