Remotely Lock and Wipe Your Samsung Galaxy S4

Edited by Leomar Umpad, Lynn, Sean, Maria and 23 others

This is part of the VisiHow series on how to use the Samsung Galaxy S4. You can visit the main VisiHow on how to USE SAMSUNG GALAXY S4 for a full list of S4 VisiHow Articles

Device security is one of the top priorities for any modern device. May it be computers, cellphones, handheld devices, or gaming consoles, the need to have your device secured from other people's access is as important as the device itself. In fact, there are cases where the information on your devices is more important and more valuable than the gadget itself. For mobile users, phone security is of great importance, whether you are on iOS, Android, Blackberry or Windows phone, having a secured device is always a concern. This is the reason phones have lock codes to keep unauthorized people from using them.

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Remotely locking and erasing data from your phone is the best thing that you could do when your device gets lost. As much as you want to get your phone back, and the pictures and files on it, you also want to protect the confidential data on it.

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Getting your phone ready for remote lock and wipe

Before setting up your phone for remote locking and data deletion you need to have these conditions met:

  1. 1
    Google account is setup on your phone
    .
    You need to set up a Google account on your device in order to start with setting up remote locking and wiping. Go to Home > Applications > Settings > Accounts > Add account > Google. You can also check on this comprehensive tutorial on how to Set Up Google Account on Samsung Galaxy S4. We also have a video tutorial for setting up Google account. You can watch this video on the VisiHow YouTube Channel
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  2. 2
    Your phone has internet access
    .
    You need to have internet access on your phone before you can do any remote tasks with it. Always turning ON the WiFi of your device may drain your battery faster, but if battery draining is not one of your concerns, then you can just leave the WiFi on. Besides, Galaxy S4's battery and CPU is designed to have minimal battery usage when WiFi is turned on.
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  3. 3
    Internet access on the device used for remote access
    .
    You need to have a computer or a mobile device with an internet access. You will use it as the controlling device to initiate the remote action.
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How to set up your Samsung Galaxy S4 for remote lock and wipe

The following procedures will allow you to set up remote locking and data wiping on your Samsung Galaxy S4:

  1. 1
    Log in with your Google account
    .
    The site that you will be visiting requires a Google account. If you do not have a Google account yet, you can use your Galaxy S4 to create a Gmail account by following the instructions on this article on how to Set Up Google Account on Samsung Galaxy S4. If you have not logged in to your Google account yet, log in through one of the various Google services like Gmail.
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  2. 2
    You will be taken to the Android Device Manager, where there is a brief description of the site and services available. It is important to note the last two important statements on the description: If you think that your S4 has been stolen, do not try to get back the device yourself; instead, ask for help from law enforcement.
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  3. 3
    Tap on the "Accept" button to proceed
    .
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  4. 4
    Sync in your Galaxy S4 with your Google account
    .
    If you get a "No active devices" message, it means that no device has been associated with your Gmail account yet. If you can see your device on the page, it means that setup has been done on your phone, and you can proceed with the next step. If your device has not been identified with your Google account, enable WiFi/data connectivity on your phone and follow the instructions on this article on how to Set Up Google Account on Samsung Galaxy S4.
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  5. 5
    Once you have setup your Google account with your S4, refresh your browser and you should see your device's name
    .
    On the page is also the last time and place that your device is located and the last time it was used.
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  6. 6
    Tap on "Setup Lock & Erase"
    .
    This will allow you to start setting up the remote locking and erasing option for your Galaxy S4.
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  7. 7
    Tap on the "Send" button to send a setup notification to your Galaxy S4 to confirm your ownership over the device
    .
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  8. 8
    Your computer will now start contacting and connecting with your device
    .
    It will wait until you give the required authorization for remote wipe and lock on your Galaxy S4.
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  9. 9
    Go to your Galaxy S4 and wait for the setup notification
    .
    You need to have the internet connection enabled on your device to receive the setup message.
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  10. 10
    Once you receive the message, pull down your notification bar and locate a notification on setting up remote lock and Factory Reset
    .
    Tap on it to open the activation page.
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  11. 11
    On the activation page, tap on Activate
    .
    This will allow you to remotely erase all of your device's data, change your screen lock, and lock your screen.
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  12. 12
    You will be taken to the Android Device Manager page; put a check mark on the check boxes for "Remote locate this device" and "Allow remote lock and Factory Reset"
    .
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  13. 13
    Once authorization and activation has been done, the webpage will now have the "Lock" and "Erase" option
    .
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  14. 14
    You are done with setting up remote lock and wipe on your Samsung Galaxy S4.
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How to remotely lock your Samsung Galaxy S4

In case of a lost phone, you can remotely lock your device so that unwanted people cannot have access to your device and its data. The following procedures will allow you to remotely lock your device.

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  1. 1
    Log in with your Google account
    .
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  2. 2
    Go to www.Google.com/Android/devicemanager to go to the Android Device Manager page
    .
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  3. 3
    Tap on the "Lock" option to lock your device against unauthorized access
    .
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  4. 4
    Enter your desired password to unlock your phone
    .
    Enter a secure password. Avoid obvious passwords such as 1234, 1111, 0000, among others. Confirm your password by typing it again.
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  5. 5
    You will receive a message that says that your device has been successfully locked with the new password/PIN
    .
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  6. 6
    Your phone will now have PIN lock automatically enabled, and it will be required before having access to your Galaxy S4
    .
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  7. 7
    You are done with remotely locking your Samsung Galaxy S4
    .
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How to remotely wipe your Samsung Galaxy S4

If your phone contains very important information, erasing all the data on it will be the best thing to do. If the wrong person gets to this important data, it may hurt you personally and financially. To erase data on your device, follow the procedures below:

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  1. 1
    Log in with your Google account
    .
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  2. 2
    Go to www.Google.com/Android/devicemanager to go to the Android Device Manager page
    .
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  3. 3
    Tap on the "Erase" option to start the procedure of remote wiping your Galaxy S4
    .
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  4. 4
    Confirm deletion by tapping on the "Erase" button
    .
    Your Galaxy S4 will be remotely wiped through Factory Reset. All of your applications, photos, music files, settings and other important data on your phone will be deleted. You will not have control over your device after the reset. You cannot track it anymore, and anyone having it can freely use it less the data on it.
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  5. 5
    You are done with remotely resetting your Samsung Galaxy S4
    .
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Tips, Tricks and Warnings

  • Internet is required on both computer and phone for the whole process to be completed.
  • When your phone is offline, it will automatically be reset and locked once it goes online through WiFi or data connection.
  • After erasing, you will no longer have access through your phone as your Google account that was initially set up with your device has also been deleted with the reset process.
  • Your personal safety is more important than your phone, so never attempt to recover it yourself. Ask for help from the proper authorities should you want to physically recover your device.

Questions and Answers

Can S4 be remotely wiped without previous set up?

Lost my phone a few weeks ago but did not previously set up to remote wipe. Can it be done if I have the IMEI #?

Yes, you don't have to turn anything on as long as you have a Google account setup on your phone which is the case 99% of the time for Android devices. To be able to activate the wiping device feature all you need to do is log into your Google account and activate remove/wipe feature, as explained in this Visi article.

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See more questions like this: How to delete photos from stolen S4 through email

See more questions like this: An icon came up on my screen and when I hit it my screen and everything gets locked

Mobile S4 , what to do to block or make it useless?

My Samsung S4 was stolen and recorded the PIN no. what to do to block or make it useless?

Perform a remote lock on the device as per the instructions in this wiki.

See more questions like this: How to erase everything from my mobile

If you have problems with any of the steps in this article, please ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.

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Categories : Tech

Recent edits by: cardiomd, Shihab, pmorgan

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