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  • Writer's pictureBurton Kelso, Tech Expert

Can You Recover Deleted Data from An iPhone and Android?

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When it comes to a Google search on how to recover Android & iPhone data you will get results from many scams, misinformation, and malware posing as recovery options. If you are one of the many people who accidentally delete important files from your iPhone and Android devices, keep in mind there are many cooks out there who would try to profit from your misfortune. So can you actually recover your data from these devices? The answers are complex and in this article, I’ll explain what kind of data recovery is possible on Android & iPhone and how you can protect yourself from accidentally deleting your data in the future. Here's what you need to know:

Can Data Be Recovered on Android and iPhone? Unfortunately, very little if any data is recoverable on the internal storage of Android & iPhone smartphones if it hasn’t been backed up. It's true that on most phones (and storage devices), when files are deleted they aren’t actually erased. Instead, the location of recently deleted files is marked as overwritable. The original data is then replaced when a new file is saved, overwriting it. So, while the data isn’t overwritten, it’s still technically retrievable – or it would be if the disc wasn’t encrypted. Modern smartphones no longer have this capability because utilize full-disk encryption and file-based encryption. This means you would have to know the encryption key for the phone and for every file that is stored on your phone. This process keeps all of the files safe from prying eyes, but it also makes it impossible for you to get your information off these devices. Also, if you were to perform a factory reset, all files stored using encryption are erased and completely irretrievable. Unless you’ve removed file-based encryption from your devices, any deleted data is impossible to recover regardless of what online services claim.

What are my options? There are no options for iPhone users, but for Android users, you can check the recycle bin to see if deleted information is located there. If not, your only other option is to restore from a phone backup.

Here are some other options depending on your phone:


  1. iCloud Backup: If you have enabled iCloud backup on your iPhone, your data (such as contacts, photos, messages, etc.) can be recoverable from your iCloud account, especially if the deletion occurred after the latest backup.

  2. iTunes Backup: Old school, I know but if you regularly back up your iPhone to your computer using iTunes, you might be able to restore deleted data from the most recent backup.

  3. Google Photos: If you have a Google Account, you can use Google Photos to backup the photos on your phone.

  4. Amazon Photos: That Prime account isn't just good for discounted rates on shopping, shipping, and looking at movies on Amazon Prime. You also have access to Amazon Documents and Photos which allows you to have automatic backups of your information to your Amazon account.


  1. Google Drive and Photos Backup: If you've enabled Google Backup on your Android device, your data might be recoverable from your Google account. This includes app data, contacts, calendar events, and more.

  2. Manufacturer Backup Services: Some Android manufacturers offer their own backup services, which can help recover data. For example, Samsung has "Samsung Cloud."

  3. Amazon Photos: That Prime account isn't just good for discounted rates on shopping, shipping, and looking at movies on Amazon Prime. You also have access to Amazon Documents and Photos which allows you to have automatic backups of your information to your Amazon account.

Here are other things to consider about data recovery on phones:

  1. Time: The sooner you attempt data recovery after deletion, the higher the chances of success. Deleted data might get overwritten by new data over time.

  2. Backup: Regular automatic backups to your device is the most effective way to ensure you can recover data if something gets deleted.

  3. Beware of Rooting or Jailbreaking: Some data recovery methods might require rooting (Android) or jailbreaking (iOS) your device. These actions can void warranties, ruin your phone and pose security risks.

  4. Data Security: Never use third-party software, especially if it requires you to share sensitive information.

Remember that no method can guarantee 100% recovery success, and results can vary based on individual circumstances. If your data is important, it's always best to consult with professionals who specialize in data recovery or to follow the official recovery methods provided by the device manufacturer.

Hopefully, this post has given you the information you need to know about data recovery for your smartphone. If you need further assistance, please reach out to me with any questions you might have. I am always happy to help!

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