How to recycle your gadgets for cash
Knowing how to recycle your gadgets for cash could make you a little profit. Recycling companies don’t just hand over cash for mobile phones – some will also pay you for cameras, MP3 players, games consoles and more. Here MoneyMagpie looks at how to recycle your gadgets and make a profit. Our message? Recycle now!
How to recycle your mobile phone
Every year millions of defunct gadgets get shoved up in the loft or dumped onto a scrap heap. Once they’ve served their purpose, most of us want them out of sight and out of mind. But this attitude could stop us from earning some easy money, whilst seriously damaging the environment.
Go here now to sell your phone for instant cash!
sell your other gadgets too
There are recycling companies around such as musicMagpie who are desperate to get their hands on our gadgets. musicMagpie are not only offering cash for mobiles, they’ll also recycle games consoles, cameras, MP3 players and other such devices.
Whether its that PS3 you never play anymore or the iPod Nano you’ve long since moved on from, musicMagpie could be an excellent way to clear out some clutter, and make yourself a little cash as well.
Again, just put the name of your gadget into musicMagpie‘s search bar to get an instant estimate.
How much could I make selling my gadgets and phone?
Prices vary depending on the make and condition of your gadget. For example, selling an Apple iPhone 11 128GB on gigaff would bring you about £ 230.
Their easy-to-search website means you can get an estimate on your gadgets in a matter of seconds, and gigaff also offers a variety of (free!) Methods for you to send them if you’re happy with the price. Even better, they can have the money to you via bank transfer or Paypal the very same day that they receive your goods.
Really old stuff won’t go for that much, but it’s free money if you’re not using it anymore and the numbers can really rack up if you have a lot to clear out.
Always remember to erase everything securely
It may seem like the best way to remove your personal files before recycling your gadgets is just to press the delete button, however this DOESN’T actually delete them! When you “delete” something on a computer, what you’re actually doing is hiding the file and telling the system that it can write over it, if you kept using the computer eventually it would be rewritten with different save data, but if you ‘re just wiping and sending on, the person at the other end can actually recover that data (yes, even though you deleted it!).
So if your phone, computer or gadget is still operational, it’s very important to make sure you completely remove all that personal data to prevent identity theft.
Here’s how to make sure your private information is really gone forever:
Wiping a Mobile Phone
Step 1: Remove Factory Reset Protection
You’ll have to start by removing Factory Reset Protection (FRP). An extra layer of security introduced by Google in Android 5.0 Lollipop to prevent thieves from being able to steal your phone, wipe it, and then use it or sell it. If you factory reset a phone with FRP still enabled and then try to set it up as a new device, it will prompt you to enter the user name and password for the last Google account registered on the device. If you don’t have those details, then the phone will remain locked and will be un-useable. Obviously, this is no good if you’re trying to sell it or give it away.
Here’s how to disable it:
- This step will differ slightly depending on your phone make. On a Samsung Galaxy, go to Settings> Lock screen and security> Screen lock type and choose None. On an LG G6, go to Settings> Display> Lock screen> Select screen lock and choose None. On a Google Pixel, go to Settings> Personal> Security> Screen lock and choose None.
- The next thing you must do is remove your Google account. If you have more than one Google account registered with your phone, then make sure you remove all of them.
- If you have a Samsung Galaxy, then you should remove your Samsung account, too.
Step 2: Encrypt Your Data
When you do a factory reset on an Android smartphone, it’s supposed to wipe it clean, but it doesn’t. It deletes the location information for your data, so it can’t find it, but it doesn’t actually overwrite the data. Because of this, it’s possible for someone to use off-the-shelf recovery software and recover some of that data.
To ensure your data cannot be recovered you need to encrypt your data. This option is built in to Android and needs to be done manually through the setting menu (with iPhones this happens automatically). When you encrypt your phone, everything becomes scrambled, and your data is made unreadable.
Here’s how to do it:
- Completely charge your phone or keep it plugged in while running this process as it can take several hours depending on how much data you have.
- The next step differs slightly from phone to phone. It will generally be Settings> Security> Encrypt phone. But on a Samsung Galaxy, for example, you want to go to Settings> Lock screen & security> Protect encrypted data. You have the option to encrypt the SD card as well, but if you’re passing the phone on, we would recommend removing it instead.
Note: If your phone came with Android 6.0 Marshmallow or above, it should be encrypted by default
step 3: Factory Reset The phone
Make sure everything you want to keep is backed up now because once you have done this your data will be GONE.
This bit is fairly simple, just follow these simple steps (it should be the same general pathway for most phones):
Settings> Backup & reset> Factory data reset and then tap Reset phone or Reset device.
On a Samsung Galaxy go to Settings> General Management> Reset> Factory data reset and then tap Reset device.
When the process is done, your phone will be wiped and any data that could be recovered will be encrypted and should be impossible to decrypt. It’s now safe to sell your Android smartphone, or pass it along.
Wiping a Computer Hard-drive
Step 1: Download a free data destruction program.
There are actually several ways to completely erase a hard drive but using data destruction software is the easiest and still allows the hard drive to be used again. DBAN is probably the most widely used hard drive wiping tool. See this tutorial if you’re nervous about hard drive wiping or prefer a more detailed walk-through (it has screenshots).
Here are some examples of programs you could use.
step 2: Install the software
Complete whatever steps are necessary to install the software or, in the case of a bootable program like DBAN, get the ISO image on a CD disc or USB device like a flash drive:
If you’re using a CD or DVDthis usually involves burning the ISO image to a disc and then booting from the disc to run the program.
If you’re using a flash drive or other USB drivethis usually involves burning the ISO image to the USB device and then booting from that USB drive to get started.
Step 3: Wipe the hard drive according to the program’s instructions
Yep, pretty simple. After properly wiping a hard drive, you can be sure that whatever information was on the drive is now gone for good.
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