Just about everyone has deleted a short message system (SMS) text message from a cell phone, only later to realise it was still needed. Depending on how long ago the SMS message was deleted, it may be possible to retrieve it. To undelete an SMS message, a data recovery utility will have to be downloaded and installed. The utility will scan the phone's memory and reconstruct the deleted text messages.
- Skill level:
Dial 611 from the cell phone to contact your provider's customer service line. Request to have your deleted SMS messages e-mailed or printed and mailed.
If your provider won't offer deleted messages, navigate to a web site that offers an SMS recovery tool. Download and install an SMS recovery utility such as "Infinity SIM Editor" or "Data Doctor Recovery."
Via USB cable, connect your phone to your computer. Acquire a USB SIM card reader if your phone does not have a USB connector. Remove the SIM card from your phone and insert it into the back of the card reader. Connect the reader to an open USB port on your computer.
Open the SMS recovery utility. Click "Tools." Select "Read Deleted SMS." Scroll through the list of recovered SMS messages and find one you wish to recover. Right-click the message and select "Undelete."
To recover all previously deleted messages, click "Tools" and choose "Undelete all SMS." Click "OK" to return the messages to the phone's SMS inbox.
Tips and warnings
- Not all SMS recovery programs work identically.Check the documentation that comes with the software for these options.
- If you discover you are missing needed messages, stop sending or deleting text messages immediately. Continuing this could cause the phone's messages to be overwritten with new data, which will mean the message(s) cannot be retrieved.
- Many cellular service providers will not give out copies of text messages without a court order.
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