iPhone Activation Lock Removal - 5 Ways to Remove iPhone Locked to Owner

Updated to Home > HowTos > Troubleshooting Tips by Nancy on Apr 28, 2024 | Approved by Jennifer Allen

When you turn on or wake up your iPhone, you may see the "iPhone Locked to Owner" prompt. This feature is specific to iOS 15 and above, and its primary purpose is to keep your device safe. If you want to unlock the activation lock on the iPhone, read this article. Here, we provide five effective solutions and give you a comprehensive overview of this new feature.

Table of contents
Part 1. What is iPhone Locked to Owner?
Part 2. Does Activation Locked Mean the iPhone Is Stolen?
Part 3. How to Remove iPhone Locked to Owner
Part 4. Tips for How to Use "iPhone Locked to Owner" Properly
Part 5. Tips to Prevent iPhone Data Loss Issues
Part 6. Frequently Asked Questions and Answers for iPhone Activation Lock Removal

What is iPhone Locked to Owner?

Activation Lock is part of Apple's security measures that are automatically enabled when you open Find My iPhone to prevent anyone from using it if your device is lost or stolen. This is especially important if your iPhone falls into the wrong hands. With Activation Lock, anyone needs the owner's Apple ID and password to:

This means that even if your iPhone is reset to factory settings, it still can't be used without the original owner's Apple ID and password. If you've bought a second-hand iPhone, you'll need authorization from the previous owner.

Does Activation Locked Mean the iPhone Is Stolen?

No, an iPhone Locked to the Owner doesn't mean the iPhone is stolen. This is just a single feature related to Find My iPhone, and it's all about preventing someone else from activating a lost iPhone and having its data stolen and a strong indication that the device may not have been properly transferred from the original Owner.

How to Remove iPhone Locked to Owner

Apple designed the activation lock iPhone doesn't aim to create any blocks for users to use the iPhone. It aims to protect users' privacy and property. If you're an iPhone owner, you can unlock the iPhone activation lock easily. In the following, five ways are introduced to remove the iPhone activation lock.

Method 1. Use iPhone Screen Passcode to Remove iPhone Unlock Activation

From the iPhone Locked to Owner window on the iPhone, you can see the option "Unlock with Passcode." Here, the "passcode" means the screen passcode you use to lock the iPhone screen.

  1. On the activation screen, tap "Unlock with Passcode."
  2. Put in the screen passcode for your iPhone.

That's it! Very simple and easy to operate.

Method 2. Enter Apple ID to iCloud Unlock

Entering Apple ID to remove the iCloud activation lock on the iPhone is the first option for people. Here are the specific steps:

  1. Open iCloud.com.
  2. Sign in with Apple ID.
  3. Click "Find iPhone."
  4. Find the iPhone name in the device list and select it
  5. Click "Remove from Account" > click "Remove."

Method 3. Unlock Activation Lock on iPhone with DNS Bypass

You can unlock the iPhone by setting up the WiFi DNS. It works because of a loophole in the WiFi DNS settings.

  1. Set up your iPhone as a new device. After that, you're asked to connect to WiFi.
  2. Go to WiFi Settings and connect it with a WiFi.
  3. Tap Configure IP > Manual.
  4. Tap Add Server > enter one of the following DNS values and keep selecting "Next" and "Back" until your device is linked to the iCloud DNS Bypass server.

Method 4. Ask Apple Support to Remove iCloud Unlock Service

No matter why it is to cause the "iPhone lock to owner," you can always ask for help from Apple Support. From there, you need to give details to the support by contacting them by phone, chat, email, or more.

Method 5. Use Third-Party Tools For iPhone Activation Lock Removal

Apple ID has become more and more important in the iOS world. All the security features, App Store, iCloud, etc., are all linked to it firmly. That's the reason why Apple officially asked you to update your Apple ID information regularly to make sure you can get it back with your phone number and email address. However, as time passed, people forgot Apple ID, and there was not enough personal information to retrieve Apple ID. In this case, the iCloud activation lock on the iPhone can't be removed. In most cases, people will give up using the locked iPhone.

The good news is that there are more and more tools available to unlock iPhone activation locks. Most of them can do the removal with simple clicks. You can try Google Search with queries like "tools for iCloud activation lock removal," "iPhone locked to owner bypass," or "iPhone activation lock removal," etc. I got some information that iMobie AnyUnlock and UnlockGo can do it. You can try any of them.

Tips for How to Use "iPhone Locked to Owner" Properly

#Enable "iPhone Locked to Owner" on iPhone

iCloud activation lock is the best way to prevent anybody from misusing the iPhone when your iPhone is lost or stolen. In this aspect, it protects your privacy from being leaked. In this case, I suggest you enable this feature. Tap Settings > [Your Name] > Find My iPhone. After that, you can turn on the options Find My iPhone, Find My Network, and Send Last Location.

#Check for Activation Lock before You Purchase a Used iPhone from Someone Else

Whenever you purchase a used iPhone, you should check whether the iPhone is signed out with Apple ID and whether the iPhone is removed from the Find My iPhone list. Make sure it is set as a new iPhone without any Apple ID signed in.

#Disable "iPhone Locked to Owner" before You Give Away Your iPhone or Send It in for Service

If you give away an old iPhone to anybody, you should disable the iPhone locked to the owner by removing it from the iCloud Find My iPhone account. Otherwise, the person who gets your iPhone can’t use it.

Tips to Prevent iPhone Data Loss Issues

Indeed, iPhone Locked to Owner is an excellent feature for iPhone users to prevent their iPhone data from being leaked to strangers or thieves. However, after losing the iPhone, you will face the reality that contacts, call history, text messages, photos, and more on the iPhone will be lost permanently unless you have backed the iPhone to iCloud or iTunes before. Keep in mind you always need to back up your iPhone, either to iCloud, iTunes, or precious data to any third-party cloud services.

After backing up your iPhone to iCloud or iTunes, you will get the backup package file. Next time, when you get a new iPhone, you can restore them to your new device, viewing the previous data. If no new iPhone is repurchased, you can try tools like iBeesoft iphone recovery software to extract data from the backup files package, selecting the needed ones to export to your computer.

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers for iPhone Activation Lock Removal


Have you encountered the "iPhone Locked to Owner" prompt? Although Apple introduced this to keep your device safe, it can be not very pleasant at times. This blog provides some ways to unlock the iPhone and regain control of your phone. No matter which route you take, it's essential to do your research and approach the situation carefully. Following the proper steps, you can successfully remove the lock and enjoy your iPhone to its fullest potential.