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How to remotely wipe an iPhone from the desktop

iPhones are generally very secure. If your iPhone were to be stolen, cracking the password wouldn’t be easy. Your phone might be wiped and sold but the data is mostly safe. If you haven’t used any form of security, or whoever has your phone might be able to guess the password/passcode, you can wipe it from your desktop. Here’s how you can remotely wipe an iPhone.


In order to remotely wipe an iPhone, you must have;

  • Find my iPhone enabled on your iPhone
  • Access to the Apple ID connected to your iPhone
  • Access to a desktop web browser

Remotely wipe an iPhone

Visit iCloud and sign in with the same Apple ID that you use on your iPhone. If you have two factor authentication set up, you will need access to a Mac or your iPhone to get the code. The iPhone is obviously not in your possession so that’s out of the question. If you don’t own a Mac, click the option that says you didn’t get the code, and select ‘More Options’.

You will be asked to verify your phone number, and provide a new one. It can take some time for Apple to verify your identity so you may not be able to remotely wipe your phone in one day. Go through the recovery options, and choose what suits you.

Once you’re able to sign into iCloud, go to Find my iPhone.

Select your iPhone from All Devices.

At the top right corner, you will see a card with three options, one of which is Erase iPhone. Click it and your phone will be wiped.

In order for the wipe operation to be sent to your iPhone, it must be connected to the internet. If it’s been stolen, it is possible that whoever has it was able to turn WiFi and Cellular data off from the Control Center. iCloud cannot enable those two toggles so the wipe will only take place once your iPhone connects to the internet.

Once your iPhone is online, the wipe command only needs a few seconds to initiate the wipe. The phone doesn’t need to be constantly connected to the internet for it to be wiped. Wiping the iPhone will remove your Apple ID and disable Find my iPhone from it. If your phone is later recovered, you may have a difficult time proving it belongs to you. If you still have the box it came it though, it will help as will any receipts you might have of the purchase. If you’ve registered the device with your Apple ID, you can use that as a way to prove it is your phone.

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