Dear O2 – Wiping My Phone Is NOT Acceptable

Dear O2,

Wiping my phone is NOT acceptable when I bring it in to get ‘repaired’!!


Let me bring you up to speed;


  1. My lovely Samsung Galaxy S2 (yes it’s not the S3, it is from my current contract which isn’t due for renewal yet) decided to die on me recently
  2. So I decided not to bother you. Instead I decided to test the phone myself by trying different charging cables and even buying a new battery, aren’t I nice not to bother you like that. But hey, unfortunately none of that worked and I had to bring it down to your shop to ‘fix’. 
  3. I did just that and dropped it off with you. 
  4. Then you kindly updated me every step of the way to tell me how my phone was doing, see the pictures below (these were taken on my iPhone 3gs which I was using as my back up at the time). 




Now here is where it all goes wrong. Very wrong. 

I bring my phone back home and plug it in, very excited to get it back in one piece and all fixed without any issues. Then I turn my phone back on and it is back to the factory settings!! What?! Where has all my stuff gone?!?!?  :-( 

Here is the letter which I received along with my phone… (note, emphasis mine)


Dear Mr M Cropper, 

Thanks for sending us your phone to be fixed. 

Nathan, one of our engineers, has found the problem and fixed it. For quality control, another one of our engineers checked the repair. The problem we sorted out is covered by a 90-day guarantee. 

We’ve also installed the latest O2-approved software as part of our standard repair process. This should improve your phones performance

You can put your SIM back in your phone and start using it straight away.

We try not to lose any of your data (like contacts and text messages) when we fix your phone, but it is not always possible. If you have backed up your personal data to O2 Bluebook, you can log in and download it. Goto

Any questions? Call oiur UK based Customer Services team, you can get the number online at or visit one of our O2 Stores. 



O2 Repair Centre Manager


Now lets get a few things clear here. 


Number 1:

What genius thought went through little Nathan’s mind to decide it was a good idea to wipe all of my data from my phone? You mention in your letter that “If you have backed up your personal data to O2 Bluebook, you can log in and download it” – May I suggest that this is checked before deleting data as part of the “standard repair process”!

Losing my data is NOT acceptable! If you have the automated backup services available then I suggest your use them and don’t rely on customers doing this as most people won’t know about this and/or won’t remember/be bothered to do this theirself. 

If I was told BEFORE sending my phone in to you to ‘fix’ then I could have done this myself. Strangely enough I don’t know about all of the different apps, services and tools available for phones these days. I struggle to keep up with my Facebook timeline let alone things that I would use once every 6 months!

This is not difficult to include in your processes – get this sorted out within your internal processes. In case you haven’t picked up on this yet – Losing my data while ‘fixing’ my phone is NOT acceptable!


Number 2:

“We’ve also installed the latest O2-approved software as part of our standard repair process”

You’re telling me that you wipe all customers phones as part of your ‘standard repair process’??? I sincerely hope not…. 

What I hope this means is that you simply upgrade things without wiping them – although based on recent experiences I wouldn’t put it past you! 


This should improve your phones performance. “

It certainly has improved the performance of my phone that’s for sure! You know why? Because there is nothing installed on it, there are no contacts and all of my photos have been deleted!!! That’s one thing that is correct about this whole scenario so far!


Number 3:

“You can put your SIM back in your phone and start using it straight away.”

No. No I can’t. Because I have to waste a week of my life copying across all my old contacts, sending out requests on social media channels for peoples contact details and downloading the endless apps which were installed on my phone. 


Next steps

The first thing I do is then get back onto your customer service channel on the phone and am ultimately told that there is nothing that can be done. The data is gone. There is nothing which can be done to retrieve it. Again, 😥

So here is how the conversation went with your customer services person named Ralph;

Ralph: I’m sorry that you’ve lost all your data. I can understand this can be upsetting, let me check this for you now.

Ralph: I’m sorry we won’t be able to compensate you by anyhow for the loss of data.

Me: A simply “sorry we lost your data” is not acceptable..

Ralph: Could you confirm me so as how do you want us to compensate you for the loss of data?

Me: 2 months free contract

Ralph: Let me check the best I can do for you.

Ralph: I’ll decrease you line rental by now applying a loyalty discount of £6 to your account for the next 12 months

Me: Can you do any better?

Ralph: I’m sorry that was the best I can do for you now.

Me: Ok, well discount that for now. Can you discount further if I call back tomorrow? This is a huge inconvenience for me and I have been a loyal customer for years..

Ralph: I completely agree with you however that was the best I can do for you and will surely add this to the account notes.

Me: Ok I will take the £6 per month discount for 12 months as compensation

Ralph: Thank you so much for your understanding.

Ralph: I really appreciate that.

Ralph: Is there anything else I can help you with?

Me: That is all thanks

Ralph: You’re welcome.

Ralph: Goodbye and take care

Ralph: Have a nice time.

Me: I think O2 has done enough to ‘help’ this week’

Me: Bye


You mentioned that your customer service team were UK based…Hmmm. Based on what I am reading in the conversation I doubt that very much (and my English is by no means perfect!!). 

Now lets get things clear. I’m sure both Nathan and Ralph are lovely people, my issue is not with them as I’m sure they have done their jobs to the best of their ability. My issue here is that your internal process at O2 is absolute nonsense to actively allow staff to delete customers data from their phones without simply asking them if this is ok!

You took the time (albeit automated messages) to let me know what was happening with my phone – how about getting one of your staff to give me a call (after all you don’t have to pay excessive charges to make these calls!) and simply explain the issue to me and ask me what I would like to do about it. 

When I asked your customer service team on the phone what notes had been left on the system about why my phone was wiped, there was nothing. 

I am sure you are aware of this O2, but people use their phones for so much more than simply making phone calls these days. People run their lives from their phone. Emails. Texts. Photos. Social networks. Events. Calendars. Mobile banking. Note taking. To-do lists. Storing contacts. Do you need me to go on? 

Simply wiping peoples phones without ANY explanation or reasoning is simply NOT acceptable when a loyal customer sends their phone in to be ‘fixed’

Here is my feedback which you will no doubt have received and ignored by now by placing it in the ‘disgruntled customer’ box..




A disgruntled customer


Michael Cropper


Update 31st January 2013

Since writing this post a couple of months ago I have been seeing more and more queries come into this blog post from confused or disgruntled customers. This issue is clearly not just an issue that I have had, but is an apparent problem from many different people. 

Here are some of the things people are searching for to find this blog post;


  • Got my phone back from o2 repair all photos messages gone
  • O2 repair
  • Acceptable time to repair a phone
  • Company wiped your mobile with personal when in for repair
  • Compensation from 02 shop for loosing my memory card
  • Deleting o2 phone data before repair
  • Do o2 repair phones
  • Do o2 stores fix repairs
  • Goto
  • If if send my phone off to be repaired do they wipe it
  • If my i phone gets sent away do they wipe my phone
  • If o2 wipe my phone can i get messages back
  • Is all data wiped before phone repair
  • My o2 text
  • O2 not wiping data
  • O2 phone repair lose data
  • O2 phone sent for repairs
  • O2 repair centre wipe phone
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  • O2 repairs additional charges
  • O2 wiped my phone can i get my photos back
  • O2 wont let me upgrade my phone online
  • Phone is being repaired will they wipe it
  • Sending phone off to repair o2
  • When phone sent off for repair, is all internal memory wiped?
  • When phones get sent for repair, do they get wiped?
  • Why does my phone data get wiped when repaired
  • Will a phones internal memory be wiped when it goes for repair
  • www.o2/repairs


I think I speak for everyone who has arrived at this blog post after being confused by what happens during the repair process – Dear O2, Communication solves all problems! Please listen to disgruntled customers and do something about this. 


P.s. O2, if you would like these disgruntled customers going to your website instead of mine, then I’m sure I can help you with that :-)