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Unlocking a mobile phone using software and cables.

Last updated 27-APR-11

If you're technically savvy and are feeling adventurous, an increasingly popular option to unlock phones is using software you find on the internet together with the cables that came with your phone to connect it to your computer. These programmes are able to change settings on your phone, and sometimes even allow you to debrand/flash your phone.

While this option can save you money it won't necessarily save you time. Unless you've done this before, finding the right program can be very time consuming and may involve registering on online forums populated by professional unlockers.

As you may be aware, while unlocking is not technically illegal in the UK, the unlocking industry is certainly shady, secretive and hackerish. This means that you must take great care when downloading software from sources you're not familiar with as these may contain malware such as viruses that may end up costing you much more than what you'll save by unlocking your phone using this method. Also be aware that if you don't know what you're doing you can easily change your phone's configuration and render it unusable, or can even delete all your precious data in the process. If you don't want to risk erasing all the text messages you've been saving from your loved-one, or risk losing your entire address book and pictures, we recommend you think seriously about going for a different option.

Finally, although software developers often provide the software for free, you have to buy "credits" in order to enable the program to unlock your device.