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I lost my Android phone. It was stolen by someone.

I erased all data and already got a notification from Android Device Manager when my phone was off. I worried, then I change all my google account passwords.

Does Android erase my data including photos in internal storage when I change my Google account password? I am very worried about my photos.

  • Android won't erase any device data simply by changing the account password. I am unsure as to whether photos are erased when ADM does a wipe, however. – Matthew Read Sep 3 '17 at 21:25
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Google can only relay commands to your stolen phone if it's powered on and connected (either via cellular data or wifi). If the thief knows this, they may be able to power up the phone in a location with no signal and no wifi and connect it to a computer with a USB cord to extract the stored photos (and likely other personal information).

The first/best protection against this is a secure locking method on the phone itself. If you have a PIN to unlock, it's unlikely the thief will be able to access the stored data (can't say if this applies to all phones or Android versions, but my old Samsung with Lollipop warned that ten wrong PIN entries would result in the phone resetting to factory original condition). If you have a good, strong password, it's even less likely the thief can access the contents. Even a gesture unlock is better than no lock.

If your phone has no lock set up, you need to assume that all your photos may appear on the internet. There's really nothing of consequence preventing it, in this situation.

  • While the first protection may be a lockscreen PIN/pass/whatever, it'd be best to combine it with storage encryption for optimal security. – Death Mask Salesman Sep 3 '17 at 16:36
  • @DeathMaskSalesman Is there ever an end to "better" in means of security? – SarpSTA Sep 3 '17 at 17:06
  • @SarpSTA Not until there will be an end in regards to prying eyes, I reckon. – Death Mask Salesman Sep 3 '17 at 17:12
  • @DeathMaskSalesman Exactly! – SarpSTA Sep 3 '17 at 17:12
  • @SarpSTA Let's rephrase my first reply, then! "On this third day of the ninth month of the year 2017, I thereby consider encryption to be the best measure to protect one's data on an Android-powered device. Do not mistakenly believe my word to stand the test of time, though, as security is ever fluid." – Death Mask Salesman Sep 3 '17 at 17:16

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