Accidentally deleting your pictures is a problem many of us have probably faced at some point in time. There may be nothing better than losing precious memories in the form of pictures and videos that you may never get back again unless you sent them to someone or have uploaded the pictures on social media.
The same recently happened to Mimi Chakraborty, a Bengali actress and politician, who accidentally lost her media files and expressed her agony on Twitter.
However, thanks to the advancement of technology, you need not worry about losing your precious pictures and videos if you have taken the necessary precautions ahead of time. The best way to avoid the hassle of recovering photos (permanently) is to not lose them in the first place. To do this, all you need to do is set your device to regularly backup on-device pictures via services like iCloud (for iPhones) and Google Photos (for Android).
How to set up automatic backup on Apple iCloud
On any iPhone, log in to your Apple ID and navigate to Settings/ [Your User Name]/ iCloud/ Photos. Here, look for the ‘iCloud Photos’ option and turn it on.
This will set the service up to backup all your media and even display them on other Apple devices logged in with the same ID. Remember you will need to pay extra for iCloud storage in order to get the backup space. Apple only gives 5GB free space to iCloud users. So if you are one of those who keeps clicking photos, make sure your iCloud has all the space to back them up.
How to set up automatic backup on Google Photos
On any Android device, download and install Google Photos from the Play Store and open the app. Make sure you are signed in with your Google ID and tap on your account profile on the top right. Among the options that follow, choose the Backup & Sync option and turn the service ON on the subsequent screen.
Once your devices are backed up by a cloud-based service like Google Photos or Apple iCloud, your data is usually safe.
Now if you should lose your phone, you will find all your photos and videos when you log in with your Apple or Google ID on a new device.
Note that you must ensure that backups are regularly taken (on either WiFi networks or cellular data) for the best results.
However, you may still lose your pictures if you or someone from your family accidentally delete some pictures or videos. Thankfully, iCloud and Google Photos have a solution to that too. Both services will keep your deleted media files for up to 30 days (iCloud) or 60 days (Google Photos) after deletion. Between those days, you can recover any accidentally lost media files. Here’s how.
How to recover accidentally deleted photos
Go to the Photos app in your iPhone and go on the Album tab, and then scroll down to file the ‘Recently Deleted’ album section. Select the photos or videos you want to recover, then click on ‘Recover’.
In order to recover photos from iCloud, go to iCloud.com/Photos on a desktop browser or mobile browser. We recommend using it on a laptop or MacBook or PC given it makes for a better view. Login with your Apple ID to iCloud Photos.
Now see the sidebar, where you will see a ‘Recently Deleted’ folder. Open this and you should see all deleted media files organised by date. Select the photos, and then recover them. Or delete them all if that’s what you wish to do.
On your Android device, open Google Photos, and on the main page, look for the ‘Library’ button on the bottom right. Open it and find the section named ‘Trash’.
Here, you will find all your deleted items in an organised manner.
Select the photos or videos you want to restore by long pressing on the thumbnails of the files and once you’re done selecting, choose the ‘Restore’ button on
the bottom right. On the subsequent screen, press ‘Allow’. Note that If an item is not in your trash, it may have been permanently deleted.
On Google Photos, your trash folder can hold up to 1.5GB of data. Note that once the trash is full, your subsequent deleted files will get deleted permanently. At this point, if you accidentally lose some important pictures, you will not be able to recover them. To avoid this, try keeping your trash folder as clean as possible.