The latest iOS update will lock down your iPhone if you’ve repaired it unofficially

iOS 9 bricks phone

Lots of you will agree, sometimes the cost of repairing an iPhone in an Apple Store is so expensive you consider purchasing another smartphone. While many fix theirs in an Apple Store, others add to what they have at hand and purchase another device from a different manufacturer, some (or most) choose to fix theirs through unauthorized outlets. For those who want to fix theirs through unauthorized outlets you might want to reconsider.

Lots of users have fallen victim to an error which shows up on the phone’s screen and prevents any further action to be carried out on the device, the “Error 53”. This error code basically bricks your handset, meaning all data and files stored on the device are gone and your device is rendered useless.

According to sources, the latest iOS update (iOS9) provided by Apple seems to be the cause of this, this update bricks handsets that have been repaired by third-parties. When it detects that unofficial parts are put into the phone, it then shut the phone down entirely. This happens in such a way that even phones repaired in the past could also be bricked as soon as they are updated to the new operating system (iOS9).

Any repair that involves the home button or the Touch ID fingerprint Sensor seems to be what triggers the Error 53. This occurs because Apple, by all means necessary wants to ensure that the hardware stays safe (The home button and Touch ID fingerprint Sensor are used to get access to the phone as well as to make payments).

Apple acknowledges the “Error 53” glitch

Apple has allowed this so as to ensure the security on its devices, According to what a spokeswoman for Apple told Money: “We protect fingerprint data using a secure enclave, which is uniquely paired to the touch ID sensor. When iPhone is serviced by an authorized Apple service provider or Apple retail store for changes that affect the touch ID sensor, the pairing is re-validated. This check ensures the device and the iOS features related to touch ID remain secure. Without this unique pairing, a malicious touch ID sensor could be substituted, thereby gaining access to the secure enclave. When iOS detects that the pairing fails, touch ID, including Apple Pay, is disabled so the device remains secure.”

She also added: “When an iPhone is serviced by an unauthorized repair provider, faulty screens or other invalid components that affect the touch ID sensor could cause the check to fail if the pairing cannot be validated. With a subsequent update or restore, additional security checks result in an ‘error 53’ being displayed … If a customer encounters an unrecoverable error 53, we recommend contacting Apple support.”

To fix the “Error 53”

To fix this, Apple suggests making sure the phone is plugged in to the latest version of iTunes. If that doesn’t provide a fix, users should then force restart the phone by holding down both the sleep button and the home button until it reboots. Users can then try again to restore it through iTunes. If none of the solutions work, users are expected to go to an Apple Store or an authorized service center.

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