Many users (including me) prefer to unlock the bootloader. The reason may vary from user to user. For me, I want to be able to use my phone even in the worst case (suppose the display stops working. How will I access all my data?). Some users install custom recovery and/or custom ROM so unlocking the bootloader is a must for them.
But do you know that this comes at a cost? After reading this post you’ll know the danger of unlocking the bootloader.
Thieves can bypass PIN/Pattern/Fingerprint or any security barrier.
This only becomes a costly bet when your phone gets stolen. All your data is accessible by connecting your phone to a computer. I got to know this when I connected my phone with unlocked bootloader (Nexus 5) but USB debugging was turned off. If USB debugging is turned off then you cannot connect your phone to computer via ADB but there’s a workaround which I figured out when one of my Android phone’s display stopped working.
Your data can be stolen just by connecting your phone to PC in recovery mode. And a few lines of adb commands will do the magic.
For some, it is a disadvantage and for some, it is an advantage. For me, it was proved to be an advantage as my display broke and I could copy all my data. But what if the phone was stolen? There are high chances that the thief would just format the phone and sell in the grey market for some cash. For people with confidential data, this is a nightmare.
How to safeguard yourself with the unlocked bootloader?
If you think your data is very important and don’t want someone to hack your phone & get away with your private data and also you want to keep the bootloader unlocked for unforeseen circumstances like broken display, then read the next part…