Irreplaceable honeymoon photos!
15 years worth of contacts!
A favorite honeymoon video taken in the Seychelles, showing a giant tortoise biting him on the hand!
All this, gone in the blink of an eye when a bungling Apple store employee deleted the contents of a man’s iPhone, faster than you can say “You backed up your phone, right?”
Actually, it would have helped if the employee at Apple’s flagship store, on Regent Street in London, had in fact asked that question before trying to fix the phone of 68-year-old London pensioner Deric White.
Unfortunately, the Apple employee did not ask that question.
White had gone to the store in December 2014 to complain to Apple when he kept receiving text messages, twice daily, during his honeymoon, telling him to reset his password.
The employee wiped the phone without warning, White said.
People told him to let it go. “You can’t take on Apple,” they said.
But White had other ideas.
He took the tech giant to court, battling for nearly 12 months until at last, on Monday, he scored what he called a “monumental” victory for the “common man.”
That victory includes being rewarded nearly £2,000 (about $2,800) for his loss: £1,200 as compensation and £773 in court costs, according to the Telegraph.
A judge in Central London County Court ruled that Apple had been “negligent.”
According to the Daily Mail, White had this to say during his hearing:
My life was saved on that phone. I lost my favorite video of a giant tortoise biting my hand on honeymoon in the Seychelles.
I was absolutely livid and my wife had been in tears.
We had beautiful pictures of the Seychelles and other pictures as well, of African rhinos.
All my contacts had gone and they had vandalized my phone. They knew they had done this and sent me on my way. This is where my anger is, they sent me on my way like an imbecile.
David and Goliath stories are nice, but that £2K isn’t going to get back any tortoise video.
Of course, there would have been no story at all if Mr. White had backed his information up, as many have noted.
Any day is good for that – not just World Backup Day! – particularly if you’re taking your phone, or any device, to the shop.
But the fact that an employee at Apple’s so-called Genius bar didn’t ask White if his data was backed up?
Well. Even geniuses make sub-genius mistakes, and I agree with the judge: it’s not fair to pin this one on an unsuspecting Apple store visitor like Mr. White.
May he and his wife use the award to make more beautiful memories on more lovely trips – memories that I’m sure nobody has to remind him to back up!
Image of Apple Genius Bar courtesy of pio3 / Shutterstock.com
24 comments on “Apple pays out after Genius bar worker wipes honeymooner’s iPhone”
The court was forever wrong in this case, and the old man should have made it a priority to back up those pictures and videos of those precious moments. The phone could have fell into the sewer via drainage hole in the road, and then would he then sue the city for having grates with wide gaps in them for the loss of the photos? Just another example of someone blaming their lack of responsibility and their naivete on someone or something else.
Just a note of advice, when you take your phone or any device that stores data to a repair shop please back up your data it is your responsibility not the responsibility of the tech center to backup your precious data.
I agree that the man should have backed up his photos and data, but there is also the issue of the reasonable assumption of expertise. If an employee of the cable company came to your house and destroyed something of yours in the process of repairing your service, he or the company would be held liable. The employee was negligent — I have never had any service interaction with an Apple employee that did not begin, “Have you backed up your hard drive?”
That would be true in personal negligence. However, the second that employee took the phone he “owned” not in literal sense. In tech world there’s a saying you touch it you own it. So, it is employees fault and as a result of his negligence companies fault because old man entrusted them to do their job assuming they knew wth they were doing.
When is 68 an old man! I’m way………past that age and get seriously annoyed when I hear for instance news articles etc reporting on a situation “elderly man or woman” when if the person was thirty it would just be “man or women” There does seem to be some discrimination out there.
We’ve all been younger once and we’ll all be older………guaranteed !
76.4 is the average life expectancy for a man so 68 is 89% of your life is over. That can be considered old.
No, not all will be older. Some may die young or middle age. Your statement is not a guarantee.
A thousand apologies if I’ve offended anyone with my previous post.
I’ve always tried to be positive and nice online since we live in a world where so many things that are not nice happen………….
I did get a little excited about this post as it’s rather close to home for me. I’m pretty close to turning 80 and thanks to the good folks at Naked Security I enjoy being able to go online feeling more secure due to their helpful articles.
I only retired around 6 years ago and had not even used a computer in my 50 plus years in the workplace. Have taught myself with great help from Naked Security and a few anxious moments over the time…………..but for the first time I’m beginning to be aware of occasional ageist remarks in life and it doesn’t always feel good.
I’m fit and walk between five and ten kms per day……………and like the 68 year old I only have one device..,.,.,,.,an iPad. My budget doesn’t extend further. Otherwise I’d be typing this on an Apple Mac.!
With regard to guaranteed to get older……….what I mean is we all get older every day no matter how old we are………….I certainly know getting very old is no guarantee due to the number of my friends who are no longer around.
Anyway once again I had no intention to cause any offence to anyone, and wish everybody an excellent week ahead………….Sincerely Rosie
I’m not sure why “old” has to be considered negatively. In Latin, the word for old is senior, for young, junior. Go figure 🙂
Come off it cuck, the employee had a duty of care whilst fixing the phone and failed to take proper precautions.
It is the responsibility of the “genius” to look out for the customers. The question should have been asked.
When people ask me what they can do when their phone is wiped out, broken, lost, etc and all of their family photos from the last 4 years are lost I literally just laugh at them and give them a link to an external hard drive and a let me google that for you link
The court was right here – the ‘genius’ took it upon himself to wipe the end users phone without authorization. Anyone that works in IT knows the first thing you do before wiping a functioning device is to backup/verify the data regardless of what the end user tells you. Why was iCloud not working? Why did the ‘genius’ need to wipe a phone to fix a simple password issue? This was negligence on the ‘genius’ and the management ‘fruit’ that trained him.
I always ask the question. If the answer is no I give them 3 options.
1. I can back it up for a set fee, but I have them sign a wavier of responsibility in case………
2 They can take the device home and back it on their own,
3. I might lose the data, and please sign this wavier of responsibility.
All technical specialists are trained – or should have been trained – to back up any device or piece of equipment before they start messing around with it. We always, always, always save the baseline, on-arrival configuration and data. Just in case our “fix” doesn’t fix it and we have to start over. The tech was lazy and careless.
Your reply makes no sense! It has nothing to do with the phone being dropped in a sewer or run over by a car or any other such accident. It has all to do with someone who is expected to be a “genius” deliberately doing something to the phone, that would obviously wipe it’s memory, with no warning to the customer.
I’m sure if he dropped his phone down a sewer he would curse himself. The Apple employee made a mistake, he perhaps worked on an assumption that the phone was backed up, but the bottom line is, you shouldn’t work with assumptions on other peoples property.
@Dan sorry but to think this way is ignorance, that guy has 68 years. I’m an IT peofessional and I work wirh many customers and a lot of them are in same age. It’s not NORMAL that this generation is able to handle and understand each aspect of modern technology. You are maybe not aware because you are in a daily situation of having to deal with modern technologies. But the is a huge amount of such modern things to understand what is absolutely not easy for that generation that growed up with wooden toys and almost no cars on the road. Nowadays we evolve so fast that a generation having played with wood toys and a generation using beaming and holographic technologies will soon meet and have to coexist. So tollerance and aknowleddgment are important to not cut somebodies rights and feelings. That’s the work of an employee, he needs to understand who stands infront of him an what are his needs before taking action. Most of the employees aren’t even listening very well to the customers. You can’t imagine how older generations feel in our current world, best of all is, those who ignore the older generations now, will also turn old someday and then they will start fighting for their rights and acceptance. Please try to think this way. It’s extremly important for all of us to understand this because the older generations just show you your future!
The next day after recovering most of his contacts by logging into his Email, and recovering his photos from Facebook, he dropped the phone and it broke. But at least he has enough to buy a new phone now and start over again. (end sarcasm).
Seriously -15 years of contacts? the oldest iPhone is only 8 years old. I call BS.
Who said they were all contacts from his iPhone? Maybe he entered them from old address books and has since tossed the books.
@Cathy, I do sympathize with him, but I won’t pity someone for keeping all their data in one place, especially on any device. Every thing breaks eventually, failure should always be expected because it is – inevitable.
BS, really? I have had three PalmPilots, and I haven’t kept a paper address book this century. So my contacts have been electronically stored for longer than 15 years. That said, yes, the man should have been backing them up with iCloud or a computer or a printout.
I am not in sympathy with the man who failed to back up anything for 15 years. The number of years alone should have convinced the judge that the customer was an idiot. He could have lost his data at any point.
He should just ask the nsa for a copy
I took two phones to an Apple store for warranty work and neither ever worked properly again. And what happened when I contacted Apple about it? I was essentially told to go f… myself and ‘buy new phones’.
This guy at least got some compensation.
apple used to care…all I’ve ever used is a mac, going on 16 years…but then Jobs died…now they are just another big mess…I too have been given the brush off, in an off hand manner…I am of the mind now that, yes, it’s nice hardware but the OS is nothing more than a recording/reporting machine…been looking at NetBSD for my future…
Whilst I’m always asking my family and friends “have you backed your holiday pics up/ have you backed up your purchased mp3’s?” as a gentle reminder – they nearly always have forgotten. For most people who are IT savvy or work in the industry it becomes second nature to backup data, sometimes in an obsessive way, but there’s a huge gap between the two camps.
After thinking about the story and getting over my judgemental thoughts that the chap should have backed up his data, I came to realise he had done nothing wrong at all.
Why? Because if I’ve read the story correctly, a chap takes in his iPhone into an Apple store to ask the “experts” why he was getting text messages asking him to reset his password. That’s it! Simple as that. To then suddenly find your phone has had it’s storage erased, is something I think most people (in IT depts too) would be shocked about too.
I think the court made the right decision.