Last weekend a Parisian pickpocket stole my Nexus 5X.

  • Not rooted
  • Locked bootloader (not modified in any way)
  • Fully encrypted (and backed up)
  • Locked (fingerprint/pattern)
  • Updated to Oreo and current security patches
  • USB Debugging turned on [MTP] (unfortunately)

Aside from the pattern lock and enabled USB debugging being weak spots, what are the chances of him successfully wiping this device and flashing a new ROM to it? In the real world, how useless will this stolen phone be to him?

  • 1
    Near zero... Even with USB Debugging enabled, you would have to unlock the screen and authorize a new connection – acejavelin Oct 12 '17 at 0:50
  • 3
    Without "enable OEM unlocking" ticked and with a screen lock to prevent him from ticking that, sounds no more than spare parts for him to sell. – Andy Yan Oct 12 '17 at 1:24
  • @AndyYan +1 no more than spare parts for him to sell. I'd like to add that it's really hard to sell an un-unlockable Android phone because of the difficulty in refurbishing or reproduction from only pieces of hardware. – iBug Oct 12 '17 at 11:21

It is possible to use the phone without flashing a new rom, or a bootloader unlock.

The thief can reset your phone using the recovery mode

  • Recovery mode can be entered by powering down the device and then pressing the volume down and power button simultaneously.

  • then he will have an option to wipe data/factory reset the phone.

  • Upon reboot he will be greeted with Factory Reset Protection.

  • The FRP can be bypassed on 8.0 oreo using the method here

  • Welcome to Android Enthusiasts! While your answer may be valid, the two links that you are provided are not only behind link shorteners, but it is possible that the website and YouTube video linked can be taken down, making your answer almost worthless. You should write the relevant parts of these resources in your answer. – MoonRunestar Oct 12 '17 at 13:07
  • @Sonickyle27 thanks for pointing out. The blog link is fixed but factory reset bypass method can't be described in words. The short urls are removed. – Shailesh Aanand Oct 12 '17 at 13:39
  • Thanks for you answer, but actually, no, he couldn't reset the phone just by entering recovery mode. I bought a second Nexus 5X, exactly the same model and secured it in the same way as the stolen one. Then I tried your method and it doesn't work. I enter fastboot and then recovery mode, but all I get is "Command not found". – Marco Oct 13 '17 at 19:02
  • What error do you exactly get? Can you share a screenshot or a picture? – Shailesh Aanand Oct 18 '17 at 11:56

After I accidentally erased bootloader on Nexus 5X, I found that LGUP can be used for factory image restoration with TOT file. Actually, I used that method again, when there was a bootstrap problem with other Nexus 5X; bootloader was locked. Detailed information here

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