A new Data and Privacy website lets users request a copy of all the data associated with their Apple ID accounts that Apple maintains on its servers. Listed below are instructions for deleting or deactivating an Apple ID.
An Apple ID account can be deleted by any customer anywhere, but Apple says deactivating feature is restricted to accounts with locations set in the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland. “In the coming months,” Apple plans to make deactivation available around the world.
*Deleting an Apple ID account is an irreversible action. Apple cannot reopen or reactivate your account after it is deleted. After your account is destroyed, you will no longer be able to access any of the media or services listed below.
- All files saved in iCloud are permanently erased.
- Your account will no longer receive iMessages, FaceTime, or iCloud Mail
- Apple Pay, iMessage, FaceTime, iCloud, iTunes Store, App Store, and Find My iPhone will no longer be accessible to you
- In addition, your paid iCloud storage plans will be terminated.
- All Apple Store appointments and support cases are canceled, but your AppleCare plans are still valid
The activation or deactivation of your iTunes account has no effect on data that does not use Digital Rights Management, such as music purchases. You can’t access or play DRM-free content in iCloud Music Library.
When you don’t intend to use your Apple ID right now but may in the future, Apple recommends temporarily deactivating it rather than erasing it. Contact Apple Support to reactivate a deactivated Apple ID.
Before you request your account to be deleted or deactivated, Apple recommends taking the following steps:
- Make a backup of any Apple or third-party apps that would use iCloud to store data.
- You may also download music and movies from iTunes Match and DRM-free purchases
- Examine any remaining subscriptions, since they will be cancelled when deactivated at the end of their paying periods.
- You should always keep copies of Apple-related information
- If you use an Apple ID account or iCloud, sign out of all your devices. In the event of account deletion, You are unable to sign out of iCloud or disable the Find My iPhone Activation Lock. If you fail to sign out, you may be unable to use your device once your account is erased.
Find out how to delete your Apple ID account here.
- Navigate to privacy.apple.com on your Mac, PC, or iPad. There is no option on iPhone.
- Enter your Apple ID email address and password. Allow two-factor authentication on another device if requested.
- Select Continue.
- In the Delete Your Account section, select Get Started.
- From the drop-down menu, select the reason you would like your account deleted, e.g. “prefer not to say,” and then click on the Continue button.
- Before you delete your account, review this checklist.
- Check that you have read and agree to the deletion terms and conditions, and select Continue.
- Depending on the status of your account, you can receive account updates by email, phone, or a different email address. Click Continue.
- You can change your mind about deleting the account for a limited time after submitting your request by printing, downloading, or writing down the unique access code. Choose Continue.
- Confirm the access code. Click Continue.
- Look over the list of important details and click Delete Account.
- An email will confirm that Apple is deleting your account. It might take up to 7 days. Your account will stay active while it is being verified.
- Make sure you sign out of the Apple ID before deleting it.
Find out how to deactivate your Apple ID.
- Go to privacy.apple.com on your Mac, PC, or iPad. It’s not available on iPhone.
- Sign in with your Apple ID. If prompted, answer any security questions or authorize two-factor authentication.
- Click Continue.
- Choose Get Started under Deactivate Your Account.
- Deactivate your account by choosing a reason such as “prefer not to say”, and select Continue.
- You can deactivate your account by reviewing the checklist and selecting Continue.
- Ensure that you have read and agreed to the deactivation terms and conditions.
- Set an email address to receive updates on your account, or use a phone number. Continue.
- Write down or print the unique access code so that you can contact Apple Support for support, including reactivating your account at any time. Click Continue.
- Confirm that you received the access code. Click Continue.
- Double check that everything is correct and click Deactivate Account.
- You will receive an email from Apple confirming that your account is being deactivated. Apple says This may take 7 days to complete. While verification is being completed, your account will remain active.
- Sign out of the Apple ID on all devices and online browsers before cancelling the account.
Apple plans to make these new options available to all customers, in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) of the European Union, which takes effect on May 25.