While Android may not have a good reputation because it's not secure, it's actually quite the opposite. With features like automatic app scanning or the recently launched Google Play protection, as well as Factory Reset Protection (FRP Lock), Android ensures that your device is virus-free and no one can access your device without your permission. In today's article, we will focus on factory reset protection as well as explain the meaning of FRP lock. We will also try to present the topic of FRP itself.
You are probably wondering what is Factory Reset Protection or FRP for short? Why do we need Factory Reset Protection on our Android and how does it work? This is one of the questions that we will answer in this article.
Protection of restoring the factory settings (FRP) is a safety feature on Android devices running Android 5.1 (Lollipop) or later. FRP provides a built-in safety feature that you can use, which protects your device and information, including screen lock, and encryption. FRP has activated automatically when you register your Google account on the device and will be switched off if your Google Account will be removed from the device before you restore the factory. Once activated, FRP will prevent you from using your device after factory data reset in an untrusted environment. This means that if the device has been reset to factory default in any way other than Settings> General Management> Reset> Factory Data Reset, the FRP lock will be enabled.
When restoring the factory settings, all settings are reset to factory defaults, and all personal data, including downloaded applications and files, are deleted. If Google FRP is enabled before performing a factory reset on your device you will need to enter your login to a Google Account.
To illustrate why the FRP function is important, we will use an example. Imagine your phone being stolen and with that with all your data, now all the thief needs to do is the factory reset your device in recovery mode and then insert a new SIM card and have a new phone. Now you are not able to remotely wipe data or even track its location as all preferences have been removed from the device.
Conversely, if you have FRP enabled, the thief cannot use your device after a factory reset, unless he has access to your Google account and its password. Regardless of whether you use recovery mode or new software, you simply can not remove the protection without a Google account ID and password.
Once authorized reset to factory setting the device will send the following message to the user attempting to log in:
This device has been reset. To continue, sign in with the Google Account that was previously synced on this device.
Basically, factory reset protection will block the user from accessing the device if he performs an authorized factory reset on the device.
Factory reset or FRP protection is automatically activated after setting up a Google account on your Android device.
After enabling FRP on an Android device, if you or someone else tries to format / factory reset the device using normal settings Backup and reset to access factory reset settings, you first need to enter the PIN to protect the device. If you have it, you can format it, but if a thief tries to access it, you will not have a PIN code security, and therefore will not be able to reset it.
FRP, or Factory Reset Protection, is automatically enabled when you add your Google Account to your Android device. Then, when setting up a new Android device, you'll usually be asked to sign in to your Google account. If you already have a Google account set up on your Android device, FRP lock is active on your device, which means that if someone tries to forcibly format your device, they have to enter your Google account details, and thus FRP protects your device from being abused.
However, if you haven't added any Google account to your Android device, you need to add a Google account to enable factory reset protection.
Now you would be wondering why and when it would be necessary to disable Factory Reset Protection (FRP). Well, there are many cases, such as if you are going to sell a phone and instead of using the Backup & Reset Settings option to format your phone, you manually delete all the data and send it to the buyer without formatting the device. In this case, the buyer will not be able to format your device because it asks for synchronized data from the last Google account on the device.
Similarly, if you reset your device with other methods, such as recovery mode, you must first remove your Google account from the device to turn off the FRP, and then perform a hard reset.
However, if you do a hard reset directly from the backup and reset settings, FRP will be automatically disabled as you will be asked to enter your Google account credentials before resetting the device itself.
If in case you sell a device with FRP enabled, you will need to share your Google account details with the other person to help them set up the device as FRP is enabled and the device will not work further if your Google Account Details is missing. Now, I guess you can see the importance of disabling the FRP lock before selling your phone.
NOTE: If you recently changed the password of the Google account associated with the phone, you should never factory reset the device within 24 hours. Remember never! If you do this, for security reasons, your Android device will not allow you to set up a phone with a Google account for which the password has been reset in the last 24 hours.
In short, you should disable the FRP lock before resetting a device linked to the same Google account that has been reset in the last 24 hours.
While disabling FRP lock is easy to do, nothing reminds you of it when you manually reset your phone (by deleting data) or through the recovery methods. Your main goal is just to remember to disable the FRP lock before handing your phone over to someone else. Below is a video showing how to do it.