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Reselling cell phones with camera has risks as pictures can be retrieved

Nada S. Mussallam
Filed on August 17, 2004

ABU DHABI - Owners of cell phones with camera devices who go for trade-in facilities or sell the device just need to know that pictures taken and then deleted by them can be retrieved by the new owner as cell phone technicians have warned that deleted images can be retrieved in some devices.

Mobile and IT specialists questioned by Khaleej Times about the matter concurred that users should be vigilant about the type of mobiles they are using to take photos.

R.A.J., a manager at a cell phone shop, said the possibility of recovering deleted images are higher in mobile phones, which are known as 'smartphones' and contain hard disks.

However, he said, 'In other types of cell phones that have a special system and do not have hard disks, chances of retrieving images and files that were already erased, are less.'

He advised that people should be well aware about the applications and the technical aspects of the cell phone with cameras that they buy, sell or swap.

According to S.A., an expert at Emirates Computers, in cell phones with 3.38-version software, deleted pictures and video clips can be restored.

He said the 'third generation phones', which are also known as 'symptoms phones' with modern 4.09 version software programme restoring erased pictures is not at all doable.

'Deleted images can not by all means be retrieved in mobile phones with advanced 4.09 version software,' he said.

He also ruled out reports about phone hackers being able to bug others using the same mobile apparatus via certain wireless connecting programmes like 'bluetooth' or 'infrared', pointing out that they are just rumours.

Suggesting a solution of efficacy, he said: 'To avoid misuse and protect their privacy, people should be keen to save intimate and special images and video clips in the memory card instead of the telephone card. Once deleted, pictures in the memory card can not be retrieved.'

'Creating a password for the memory card will be safer as any attempts to retrieve files using the 'flash-link' or 'memory card reader' will not be possible,' he added.


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