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Getting a new MacBook are you? Congrats. They really are the coolest, sleekest, most dependable laptops on the market. And while you can look forward to faster speeds, new and improved features, along with a problem-free computing experience – there is still just one problem: what to do with your old MacBook? Of course, it’s still got some value so you’ll definitely want to sell it. But where, and how much? But most importantly, what must you do to prepare it for re-sale? One of the biggest concerns these days is identity theft. And wouldn’t you know it, a lot of it happens when one computer exchanges hands with another. It’s in the sale of our trusty laptops where a bulk of the identity theft happens. So we’re here to help you make sure that the sale of your old MacBook goes smooth and identity theft free. The following tips are a list of things you must do before handing over your MacBook to some new owner, as after all, you’re only selling the computer. Not your identity along with it.
Backup Your Files
Rule number one of all computer re-sales is to back up all your files; even the ones you don’t think you’ll need, as you’d be surprised how you’ll end up looking for them later. The best way to do a full backup is onto an external hard drive. These days they come cheap and full of empty storage for even the most full of hard-drives. Once you’re done, make sure to properly and fully erase everything on your computer. You’d be surprised how much information a savvy thief can extract from just one little innocent looking file.
Sign Out of iTunes
Your iTunes account knows you better than your birth certificate. It’s got you name, address, credit card numbers – everything a criminal could dream of. So you’ll want to make sure you’re signed out by going to the menu bar in iTunes and clicking Account > Authorizations > Deauthorize This Computer. That’s it. You’re out, and safe.
Sign Out of iCloud
Next stop is iCloud, yet another warehouse of personal information you don’t want others having access to. To sign out of the cloud, go to Apple Menu > System Preferences. Then click iCloud’s deselect option on Find My Mac. You’ll then be asked if you want to remove your data from your Mac. But as long as you are using the same Apple ID, iCloud data will remain on any other device that has your ID.
Sign Out of iMessage
If you’re using Mac OS X Mountain Lion or later, you’ve likely been using iMessage. And this you’ll want to sign out of as well. Less because it contains a ton of your information, but more so because should someone else sign on as you, they can pose as you, asking your friends and relatives for vital information, even money. To sign out of iMessage, go to Preferences > Accounts, then simply click Sign Out.
Erase and Install OS X
Lastly, you’ll want to reformat the hard drive and reinstall a fresh version of OS X. This is not just a precautionary measure as your ID is laced all throughout your operating system’s memory, but also, as a courtesy to your old MacBook’s new owner. Even though it may not be new, for the person buying it, it’s new to them.
Where to Sell Your Old MacBook
Now that your MacBook is fresh and free of your identity, the only thing that remains is where to sell it. While Kijiji and Craigslist come first to mind for many, there are better places out there on the Internet. Sites such as Macworld’s mResell, CashForLaptops, Sell Macbook, and our favorite, Mac Me An Offer. It’s on these sites you’ll get a sense of how much your MacBook is truly worth given its year, model, and condition. As well, you’ll get top dollar on it, as opposed to sites where the users aren’t as MacBook savvy. Good luck!