Error 53


'Error 53' Articles

Apple Fined $9 Million for Misleading Some Australian Customers Over 'Error 53' Device Repairs

The Australian government today fined Apple $9 million for misleading some customers into believing they could not have their iOS devices fixed by Apple if they had been previously repaired by a third-party repair shop, reports The Sydney Morning Herald. Today's ruling comes after the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) launched an investigation into Apple after the ACCC received complaints over "error 53," issues. Error 53, widely publicized in 2016, caused some iPhone 6 users who had the Home buttons on their iPhones fixed by a non-Apple technician using non-original parts to see their iPhones bricked following a software update. When the error code first surfaced, Apple said that error 53 was a protective security feature meant to prevent "malicious" third-party components from potentially compromising a user's iPhone, but after public outcry, Apple released a software update restoring functionality to bricked iPhones. Following the software update to unbrick iPhones, Apple claimed that the error 53 issue was meant to be a factory test and never should have impacted consumer devices. Amid error 53 investigations led by the ACCC, Apple admitted that between February 2015 and February 2016, at least 275 Australian customers had been told in store or over the phone that they could not have their iPad or iPhone fixed if it had been repaired by a third party, such as in the error 53 situation. Apple's refusal to provide repairs to Australian customers who had previous repairs done by third-party shops violates Australian Consumer Law,

Australian Consumer Regulator Sues Apple Over 'Error 53' iPhone Shutdowns

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has filed a lawsuit against Apple alleging that it violated Australian consumer law when a software update it issued last year bricked some users' iPhones. The lawsuit relates to the infamous "error 53" message reported back in February 2016 that began greeting some users after they updated their devices. It later emerged that the devices bricked by the message had been repaired by third-party technicians. Apple initially said the message was a protective security feature designed to protect consumers' devices from the installation of fraudulent Touch ID components, but later admitted the error was a mistake and apologized for it, offering instructions online explaining how to fix affected devices. The Australian regulator that filed the federal lawsuit is seeking financial penalties from Apple. Penalties of up to A$1.1million ($829,000) per breach could be assessed, according to The Wall Street Journal, but it would be up to the court to define how many breaches occurred. Apple has yet to respond to request for comment. Rod Sims, chairman of the ACCC, said the lawsuit challenges Apple's entire policy of requiring customers to pay for repairs to defective components if their device was previously serviced by a third party. "It's fair to say we haven't observed similar behavior by other manufacturers," Mr. Sims said in an interview, adding that it is often cheaper for customers to seek repairs from third-party shops. "Apple seems to have a particular way of doing things."Australian Consumer Law requires

Judge Rules in Apple's Favor, Dismisses 'Error 53' Lawsuit

Apple's fight against an ongoing "error 53" lawsuit came to an end today when a U.S. district court judge dismissed the case and declared that the plaintiffs "lack standing to pursue injunctive relief" and have not been able to prove permanent data loss. Apple's error 53 woes began in February, when the media picked up a story about an ongoing "error 53" message that was permanently bricking iPhones. As it turned out, Apple had implemented a feature that disabled the iPhones of customers who had unauthorized repairs on the home buttons of their devices. Non-matching repair components or damage that affected the Touch ID fingerprint sensor caused an iOS device to fail a Touch ID validation check because the mismatched parts were unable to properly sync. The validation check occurred during an iOS update or restore, and when failed, Apple disabled the iPhone, effectively "bricking" it in an effort to protect Touch ID and the related Secure Enclave that stores customer fingerprint information. Apple eventually said the error 53 bricking issue was meant to be a factory test that should not have affected customers. Just days after the error 53 news began circulating, Apple was hit with a lawsuit seeking $5 million in damages and a repair program for affected devices. Plaintiffs accused Apple of false advertising and failing to warn consumers about the security features that ultimately rendered their iPhones inoperable and caused data loss. Following the lawsuit, Apple released an updated version of iOS that restored iPhones and iPads affected by error 53 to working

'Error 53' Plaintiffs Criticize Apple's Reimbursement Effort, Aim to Keep Lawsuit Alive

In February, Seattle-based law firm Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala (PCVA) brought a class action lawsuit against Apple over the "Error 53" bug, which bricked iPhone 6 models with select third-party components. Apple quickly responded, confirming the error and issuing an updated version of iOS 9.2.1 to fix the error. Earlier this month, Apple moved to dismiss an amended version of the class action lawsuit. However, PCVA and the plaintiffs have now moved to keep the lawsuit alive, according to AppleInsider. Apple argued the lawsuit should be dismissed because the company issued a fix for the error and offered to reimburse customers who had paid to have their devices replaced or repaired. However, the plaintiffs are now arguing that Apple failed to properly alert users to the reimbursement program. They argue the "vague" announcement on Apple's website and a support document published in April isn't sufficient enough to inform affected customers. The plaintiffs also claim having trouble in getting touch with Apple about reimbursement, with one plaintiff claiming they were never sent a reimbursement notice and another saying they were disconnected from Apple support twice when trying to contact the Cupertino company about the program. The controversy first started in February, when users who had their iPhone 6 models repaired by third-party technicians were seeing the mysterious "Error 53" that bricked their phones. The error showed up when devices had parts replaced with components not sourced from the original device, with the not-matching components affecting the

Apple Releases Updated Version of iOS 9.2.1 to Fix Devices Bricked by 'Error 53'

Apple today released an updated version of iOS 9.2.1, which is designed to prevent the "error 53" device-bricking message that some iOS users received after having their iPhones or iPads repaired by third-party services using components not sourced from the original device. Non-matching repair components that affected the Touch ID fingerprint sensor caused an iOS device to fail a Touch ID validation check because the mismatched parts were unable to properly sync. The validation check occurred during an iOS update or restore, and when failed, Apple disabled the iPhone, effectively "bricking" it in an effort to protect Touch ID and the related Secure Enclave that stores customer fingerprint information. Apple originally explained that error 53 was intentional, implemented as a way to prevent the use of a malicious Touch ID sensor that could be used to gain access to the Secure Enclave, but customers with bricked devices were not happy with the explanation and Apple found itself facing a class-action lawsuit. Today's update will restore iPhones and iPads that have been disabled due to "error 53" to full working condition and it will ensure that future iOS devices that have had similar repairs will not be fully disabled. Touch ID will not, however, be accessible until Apple-authorized repairs are made to a device affected by the issue. Alongside the new version of iOS 9.2.1, Apple has also published a support document outlining how customers can resolve the "error 53" problem, and it has issued an apology, shared by TechCrunch. Apple now says the error 53

Apple Facing Class Action Lawsuit Over 'Error 53' iPhone 6 Bricking

Seattle-based law firm Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala (PCVA) today followed through with plans to bring a class action lawsuit against Apple over the "Error 53" controversy that made headlines last week. "Error 53" is the error code that some iPhone 6 owners have received after third-party repairs that affect Touch ID were made to their iPhones, rendering the devices unusable. As explained by iFixit, repairs made by third-party services using components not sourced from the original device cause the iPhone to fail a Touch ID validation check because the mismatched parts are unable to properly sync. Parts that can impact Touch ID include the screen, flex cable, and Home button. When this Touch ID validation check fails during an iOS update or restore, Apple disables the iPhone, effectively "bricking" it in an effort to protect Touch ID and the related Secure Enclave that stores customer fingerprint information. Apple says that without the validation check, a malicious Touch ID sensor could be used to gain access to the Secure Enclave. PCVA attorney Darrell Cochran, who is leading the Error 53 lawsuit, claims that Apple's security argument is invalid because affected iPhones often work fine for several months following repairs as the validation check only occurs when downloading a new version of iOS. He also cites Apple's failure to give a warning about the consequence of an update as an issue that will be featured in the lawsuit."No materials we've seen from Apple ever show a disclosure that your phone would self-destruct if you download new software onto a phone,"

Law Firms Consider 'Error 53' Lawsuits Against Apple as Some Stores Authorized for Repairs

Several law firms are considering lawsuits against Apple following news that the company disables iPhone 6 models that have third-party repairs that affect Touch ID, reports The Guardian. The "Error 53" controversy started last week when news circulated about customers who have had their iPhones disabled and rendered unusable by a mysterious "error 53" message. It turns out Apple disables the iPhones of customers who have had unauthorized repairs on their devices. As explained in a thorough post from iFixit, a repair made by a third-party service using non-original components cannot pass a Touch ID validation check because mismatched parts don't sync up properly. According to an Apple spokesperson, when the iPhone's parts can't be properly validated because of a repair done to a component affecting the Touch ID sensor, the error message is triggered in an intentional effort to keep Touch ID and the secure enclave that stores fingerprint information safe. Damaged phones also have the potential to give the error."We protect fingerprint data using a secure enclave, which is uniquely paired to the touch ID sensor. When iPhone is serviced by an authorised Apple service provider or Apple retail store for changes that affect the touch ID sensor, the pairing is re-validated. This check ensures the device and the iOS features related to touch ID remain secure. Without this unique pairing, a malicious touch ID sensor could be substituted, thereby gaining access to the secure enclave. When iOS detects that the pairing fails, touch ID, including Apple Pay, is disabled so the

Users Facing 'Error 53' Bricking Message After Third-Party iPhone 6 Home Button Repairs

Some iPhone 6 users who had their smartphones repaired by third-party technicians are reporting that a mysterious "error 53" message is permanently bricking their iPhones (via The Guardian). Users who have had Touch ID on their iPhone 6 fixed by a non-Apple technician, and agreed to update the iPhone to the most recent version of iOS, are facing an issue which essentially prevents all access to the iPhone. Freelance photographer Antonio Olmos is one such affected iPhone 6 user who had his iPhone repaired in Macedonia while working. He said "it worked perfectly" after the repair shop finished fixing the broken screen and home button, but once he updated to iOS 9 he got an "error 53" message and could no longer access any of his personal content on the iPhone. An Apple Store in London was shown the issue, and staff there admitted there was nothing they could do for him besides sell him a new iPhone. “The whole thing is extraordinary. How can a company deliberately make their own products useless with an upgrade and not warn their own customers about it? Outside of the big industrialized nations, Apple stores are few and far between, and damaged phones can only be brought back to life by small third-party repairers," Olmos said. "I am not even sure these third-party outfits even know this is a potential problem." Speaking with The Guardian, iFixit's Kyle Wiens said that the issue, while still unclear, appears to be Apple ensuring only genuine components are being used for repairs. Once a third party changes the home button or internal cable, the iPhone checks to be