Repair Mode, rolling out first on Galaxy S21 line, stops third-party repairmen from stealing data

For those Samsung Galaxy phone users worried about having the personal data on their handsets stolen while the phone is being repaired by a third-party. Samsung has announced a “Repair Mode” feature that it has started to disseminate in South Korea. The company said, “‘Repair Mode’ is a function that allows you to selectively disclose data when repairing a smartphone, and fundamentally blocks concerns about access or leakage of personal information that may occur during the repair process through some private companies.”
The feature is found in the ‘Battery and Device Care’ section of the phone’s Settings and when turned on, the phone automatically reboots. Once the phone restarts in this mode, nobody, including the owner of the device, will be able to access personal data, accounts, photos, and messages. Only default apps can be used. After the device is repaired, exiting “Repair Mode” and rebooting the phone (using the fingerprint sensor or pattern recognition to unlock it) will allow the user to once again access his or her personal data.

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With “Repair Mode” enabled, users can disclose which data the repair technicians are allowed to view. The update containing “Repair Mode” will start rolling out on Galaxy S21 models and will be offered to more Galaxy handsets in the future. And Sammy also plans on adding the feature to its phones in other markets outside of South Korea.

This could help Galaxy phone owners feel less concerned about having their phones kept overnight for repair. Shin Seung-won, managing director of the Security Team of Samsung Electronics’ MX Division, said, “Technology is connecting the world closer than ever, but the risks are also increasing. Samsung’s top priority is customers. It’s about making sure you stay safe while trying out this new experience.”


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