Break Dancing: How to stay content and safe trading in old phone

There comes a time when you have to say so long to your cell phone.  Maybe it’s time to upgrade to a newer device.  Maybe you’ve just dropped your current phone one too many times.  But through it’s time with you, your phone has collected a wealth of personal information and data.

So to protect yourself and the memories on your old phone, here’s what you need to do before trading it in.

The first thing you want to preserve when you switch to a new phone is your contacts list.  This process is easy if you’re upgrading the same type of device, for example, moving from an iPhone 6 to an iPhone 7.  All you have to do in this case is make sure that your Apple ID, Google, or Microsoft Outlook account has been synced with your new account info, and all you have to do is enter your account details in your new device.

Of course you’ll also want to transfer your music, photos, and videos before you say goodbye to your old phone again.  This is a fairly easy process as well.  Apple iCloud, Google Photos and Music, and Microsoft One Drive all offer the option of pushing photos, music, and videos to an online server.  You can also drag and drop them yourself by connecting your old phone to your PC with a USB port.  Then you can transfer the files from your PC to your new device via the USB port as well.

You’ll probably want to back up your apps and data as well before upgrading to a new device.  Using software such as Helium if you own an Android device, can help you with this.  If you’re upgrading from one iOS device to another, this process is a little bit easier.  You can simply use iTunes to back up your current apps and data.

And of course the most important thing before getting rid of your current phone is clearing everything of yours off of it before you recycle it or donate it.  Every smart phone, no matter if it’s an iPhone, Android, or anything else, has a factory reset.  By using the factory reset, you can wipe away your devices memory of everything.  So you can delete all of the apps, videos, photos, email accounts, personal accounts, etc. by doing a factory reset.  You can go the extra mile here as well by linking your phone after the doing the reset to a dummy account.  Then you can do another factory reset.  And of course make sure you remove the SD card before saying goodbye to your current device.

These measures ensure a smooth transition to your new phone and also that you’ll be in a new device safely and without the ever present fear of identity theft.

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