Don’t Waste Your Money: Erase info before returning gadgets - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Don’t Waste Your Money: Erase personal information before returning electronics

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(WTOL) – January and February are big months for gadget returns as people send back electronics that do not seem to be working properly or they simply did not want. One man cautions before returning a gadget, after he learned one thing that must be done before boxing it up.

Sean Morath decided he could not afford to keep both his phone and the iPad he received over the holidays. He chose to return the iPad.

"Played with it for a few days, decided I miss my smart phone, (it's just too convenient), so I brought it back," said Morath.

According to Morath, Best Buy gave him a full refund, but a few weeks later he received a strange e-mail regarding his used iPad.

A friend of his just bought a new iPad, and when he opened it up, it said, ‘Hello Sean Morath.'

Morath's used iPad was resold without his name and credit card information removed.

"He was able to purchase apps, because to register your iPad, you have to put in a bank account or credit card number, so he could have bought apps or anything and it would have gone straight to my bank account," explained Morath.

A Best Buy spokesperson said stores are supposed to erase and reset all returned electronics.

"We are sorry to hear about this incident and we will take the appropriate action to rectify this situation," said a Best Buy spokesperson.

To avoid this risk, go to the gadget's settings and look for an erase or restore icon. Another option is to watch a store employee erase the information.

"Either find someone you know who knows how to clear them out, or demand it gets erased in front of you before you leave the store," suggested Morath.

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