Ready Cory H just dropped word that he's received an e-mail from Woot.com with some slightly troubling news, but also with a very cool resolution. Cory purchased a refurbished Motorola Xoom tablet from Woot last year. They've been sold off and on for deep discounts, and it's a pretty good deal. Only, it turns out that Motorola might not have properly refurbished them all -- mainly that user data from the previous owner might not have been erased. That's a pretty big whoopsie.
In its own press release, Motorola says that 100 tablets out of a batch of 6,200 refurbished units might not have been wiped. Woot, in its e-mail, identifies them as having been available for purchase between Sept. 29, 2011 and Dec. 4, 2011. (For some context, Motorola has said it sold 1 million Xooms in 2011.)
Motorola's looking to get the unwiped Xooms back, will provide a pre-paid shipping box and rush your device back in three or four days. And they're sweetening the deal with a $100 American Express gift card, at least in Woot's version of the e-mail.
And Motorola hasn't forgotten about the 100 users who might have had their information sent on to new owners. For those who purchased and returned a Xoom between March and October 2011 at Amazon.com, Best Buy, BJ’s Wholesale, eBay, Office Max, Radio Shack, Sam’s Club, or Staples and a few other independent retailers, Motorola is offering a complimentary two-year membership of Experian’s ProtectMyID service.
All in all, it's a good response from Motorola (and Woot, too). Even if its only 100 tablets, someone's user data should be left behind on a refurbished model.
Read Motorola's full press release here, and we've got Woot's e-mail after the break.
Want to do a good deed and possibly get paid for it? As somebody who purchased a Motorola Xoom Wi-Fi tablet from Woot.com between September 29, 2011 and December 4, 2011, pay close attention to the rest of this email. There may be money – and good karma - in it for you.
Motorola Mobility has notified us that some of those tablets were not fully refurbished by Motorola. Specifically, Motorola may not have completely wiped previous user data off the devices.
Let's be clear here: only the original purchasers of these devices may have had their personal information compromised; Motorola is also addressing this issue with the original purchasers who may have been affected. At no point was your information as a Woot customer compromised.
So why is this your concern? Well, Motorola is nicely asking the Woot customers with the affected devices to return the devices to Motorola so that the refurbishment process can be completed. Of course, Motorola will also pay for all the necessary shipping, in the form of a pre-paid shipping box. Your newly reset Xoom will be back in your hands in about 3-4 business days. And so will a $100 American Express gift card for your trouble.
We encourage you to participate in this process by calling Motorola Customer Support at 1-800-734-5870, then selecting option 1 (tablets). Since not all of the Xooms sold by Woot are affected, Motorola will check your serial number to see if you need to return your device. You may also check online at www.motorola.com/xoomreturn. If your serial number is on the list, you're eligible to participate in the process and receive the $100 American Express gift card.
Before you send your Xoom to Motorola, be sure to back up your music, videos and photos, as Motorola's factory reset will erase all of that stuff. Any applications downloaded from the Android Market can be downloaded again when your device is returned. If you’ve paid for any Android Market applications, logging into your Gmail account will allow you to download them again for free.
Woot and Motorola thank you for participating in this voluntary program. We hope the $100 American Express gift card is worth your trouble. And we apologize for any confusion or inconvenience this may have caused. If you have comments or questions for the Woot team, please contact us at email@example.com.