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Motorola Failed to Fully Wipe Batch of Refurbished XOOMs in 2011, User Data Potentially in the Wild

If you purchased and then returned a Motorola XOOM WiFi any time between March and October of 2011, there is a chance that your unit was not fully refurbished properly and then sold again between October and December 2011 on Woot.com. That means that some of your personal information including pictures, documents, usernames or passwords could have been left on your returned device and then sold again to someone as a refurbished unit.

Motorola released a statement moments ago to address the situation. They are offering potentially affected customers a free 2-year Experian ProtectMyID Alert subscription just to be safe. So if you returned a WiFi XOOM to Amazon.com, Best Buy, BJ’s Wholesale, eBay, Office Max, Radio Shack, Sam’s Club, or Staples during that March to October stretch, you will need to contact Experian to get setup with this service.

More details after the break.  

Motorola Mobility Notifies Certain Purchasers of Refurbished Motorola XOOM™ Wi-Fi Tablets of Refurbishment Process Error

Feb. 03, 2012

LIBERTYVILLE, Ill. – Feb. 3, 2012 – Motorola Mobility, Inc. today announced that it has recently learned that approximately 100 out of a batch of 6,200 Motorola XOOM™ Wi-Fi tablets that were refurbished by Motorola Mobility may not have been completely cleared of the original owner’s data prior to resale. The affected tablets were resold by Woot.com between October and December 2011. While this matter likely affects only a small number of refurbished units, Motorola has a strong commitment to its consumers, and is proactively responding to mitigate any risk to its customers. Motorola has confirmed that any refurbished units sold outside the time period in question were properly refurbished.

The information that may be accessible to the purchasers of the impacted refurbished tablets may include any information that the original user elected to store on the tablet. It is possible that users might have stored photographs and documents. They may have also stored user names and passwords for email and social media accounts, as well as other password-protected sites and applications.

Motorola is offering customers who purchased and then returned a Motorola XOOM Wi-Fi tablet to Amazon.com, Best Buy, BJ’s Wholesale, eBay, Office Max, Radio Shack, Sam’s Club, or Staples and a few other independent retailers between March and October 2011 a complimentary two-year membership of Experian’s ProtectMyID™ Alert to mitigate any risks. Original owners are advised to contact Experian at 1-866-926-9803 to sign up for the credit monitoring service. These original owners are also advised to take precautionary measures to protect their identity, such as changing their email and social media passwords. Original owners who performed a factory data reset prior to returning the device are not impacted.

In conjunction with today’s announcement, Motorola is also actively pursuing the return of the impacted refurbished units to ensure that the memory of each device is cleared. Customers who purchased a refurbished Motorola XOOM Wi-Fi tablet from Woot.com between October and December 2011 are encouraged to visit motorola.com/xoomreturn or to call Motorola Mobility Customer Support at 1-800-734-5870, select Option 1, in order to determine if their tablet is affected.

Motorola sincerely regrets and apologizes for any inconvenience this situation has caused the affected customers. Motorola is committed to rigorous data protection practices in order to protect its customers, and will continue to take the necessary steps to achieve this objective.

About Motorola Mobility
Motorola Mobility, Inc. (NYSE:MMI) fuses innovative technology with human insights to create experiences that simplify, connect and enrich people’s lives. Our portfolio includes converged mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets; wireless accessories; end-to-end video and data delivery; and management solutions, including set-tops and data-access devices. For more information, visit motorola.com/mobility.

  • i bought a xoom wifi from woot.com and it had [email protected] account set up on it.  i wiped it of course but it turns out moto wants these units back for some reason to refurb again and i’ll get a $100 gift card.  here is the email i got form woot.com

    Want to do a good deed and possibly get paid for it? As
    somebody who purchased a Motorola Xoom Wi-Fi tablet from Woot.com between
    September 29, 2011 and December 4, 2011, pay close attention to the rest of
    this email. There may be money – and good karma – in it for you.


    Motorola Mobility has notified us that some of those
    tablets were not fully refurbished by Motorola. Specifically, Motorola may not
    have completely wiped previous user data off the devices.


    Let’s be clear here: only the original purchasers of
    these devices may have had their personal information compromised; Motorola is
    also addressing this issue with the original purchasers who may have been
    affected. At no point was your information as a Woot customer compromised.


    So why is this your concern? Well, Motorola is nicely
    asking the Woot customers with the affected devices to return the devices to
    Motorola so that the refurbishment process can be completed. Of course,
    Motorola will also pay for all the necessary shipping, in the form of a pre-paid
    shipping box. Your newly reset Xoom will be back in your hands in about 3-4
    business days. And so will a $100 American Express gift card for your trouble.


    We encourage you to participate in this process by
    calling Motorola Customer Support at 1-800-734-5870, then selecting option 1
    (tablets). Since not all of the Xooms sold by Woot are affected, Motorola will
    check your serial number to see if you need to return your device. You may also
    check online at http://www.motorola.com/xoomreturn.
    If your serial number is on the list, you’re eligible to participate in the
    process and receive the $100 American Express gift card.


    Before you send your Xoom to Motorola, be sure to back up
    your music, videos and photos, as Motorola’s factory reset will erase all of
    that stuff.  Any applications downloaded
    from the Android Market can be downloaded again when your device is returned.
    If you’ve paid for any Android Market applications, logging into your Gmail
    account will allow you to download them again for free.


    Woot and Motorola thank you for participating in this
    voluntary program. We hope the $100 American Express gift card is worth your
    trouble. And we apologize for any confusion or inconvenience this may have
    caused. If you have comments or questions for the Woot team, please contact us
    at [email protected].






  • Its your own fault if you didnt wipe it before returning it.
    Common sense people.
    People cant even wipe their own butts nowadays.

  • Anonymous

    waaay back when…I had to return my original razr and got a refurbished one that wasn’t wiped…came pre loaded with naked pics from the previous owner, not too shabby.

  • Rich

    ha-ha that’s what you get for being stupid and not wiping your ass behind you…  Whats funny is how cyber theft is mostly cause by the end user being a dumb ass…

  • DroidzFX

    You got moto’d!

  • Anonymous

    Not only that, they apparently didn’t refurb the hardware either. Got an email from Woot about it. Got a $100 Am Ex gift card out of it though.

  • ddevito

    Use the ‘Locate my Droid’ app and wipe it remotely.

    Ah, the power of Android

  • Vaxick

    We had data leftover on the one we bought for my mother for Christmas.  I just did a format to it rather than be nosy.

  • Tjz

    Win a lawsuit and them smash back into that brick wall. MOTOROLLIN…. haha

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  • Anonymous

    FUKIN A!!! . . . What the hell?

  • Old Far^

    Old news… I received my letter and free membership a few weeks back.

  • Anonymous

    : It’s not Motorola’s responsibility to wipe this information. Sorry but if I buy something, and then do not like it, it gets wiped before I bring it back. Who is that stupid to leave things like pictures, contacts, videos, etc on something like that?

    • Skinja99

       Some people probably had broken devices or other issues, and that is why the sent it back. So some folks probably couldn’t even use their device when they sent it back, much less remove or wipe everything.

      • Anonymous

        : Valid point. It’s these users that deserve this coverage. However, the majority will not fit that description.

  • Lmrojas

    For everyone who is talking about how they would wipe before they sent it back, have you thought maybe the device woyld boot back up?

  • Anonymous

    That’s embarrassing. It’s definitely amateur hour at Moto!

  • Anonymous

    It’s been a while since I said this: F Moto.

    C’mon Google, get that purchase completed, and clean house!

  • Andrew

    LOL Moto

  • Anonymous

    Thats gross, I can’t believe they didn’t wipe. 

    • Anonymous


      • ShooterMcGavin

        Any one see one of the store’s names, BJ’s wholsale selling unwiped devices, gotta love it

    • When you dont wipe, you get dingleberries !!!

  • Ahsan1223

    Moto-trolled again!

  • Nexussss

    I wipe and clean a device short of using bleach before ever returning it

    • Anonymous

      My first thought.  

    • Josh Groff

       I always factory reset mine, if this happened to people, it’s largely their own fault.

  • Jspumphrey

    Why would you be dumb enough to leave your info for someone else to wipe?

    • Anonymous

      In some cases, the devices would be inoperable to the point where deleting the data would not be possible.  After the offending hardware was replaced, the data would become available.

      Just sayin….

      Motorola REALLY on a roll here these days.

    • Anonymous

      My second thought.