A man whose mother left her iPad to her family in her will says Apple’s security rules are too restrictive.
Josh Grant, 26, from London, told BBC Radio 4’s You & Yours that his mother bought the iPad when first diagnosed to take her mind off the cancer treatment with puzzles and keep in video contact with her children. Grant told the Independent that before his mother died she had updated the tablet to IOS 7 and had been enjoying its new look and security measures.
Grant’s mother, Anthea, was clearly a smart woman: she covered the iPad in her will and named Patrick and Josh the co-executors of her estate. What she failed to do, however, was tell her sons her Apple ID password. As Grant later stated, “Funnily enough, I think she had bigger things to worry about.” Without the correct Apple ID password they were unable to access the iPad. Attempting to restore the device to its factory setting, they were told they would need written permission from their recently deceased mother. Of Course this was impossible, so they sent Apple a copy of her death certificate, the will and a covering letter from their solicitor. This still wasn’t enough, and Apple invoked the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, instructing the family to provide a court order in order to unlock the tablet.
As Grant points out, it would be ludicrous to proceed with court action, as they would need to engage their solicitor, who charges £200/hour, when they could instead buy a new iPad for £329. Apple declined to comment about the incident but did tell the BBC that the iOS 7 security features are to stop and deter theft. Apple have also changed their security terms and conditions in the last month stating: “You agree that your Account is non-transferable and that any rights to your Apple ID or Content within your Account terminate upon your death.”
Josh Grant concluded on his blog, “For a company that sells itself on the idea we are all part of one big Apple family, they have been very cold. Understandably, my brother has given up and we now have a redundant iPad. If anyone has any suggestions for an unusable iPad, please do send them in. I’ve suggested illuminated placemat and shiny paperweight.”