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Can I recover data from a T2 chip Mac without a password?

What if I forget the password of a second-hand Mac with a T2 security chip, and the FileVault is not turned on, can I recover data from my Mac? Additionally, because the T2 security chip on a Mac already encrypts the drive, what use is FileVault? Is it inherently impossible for someone to boot into Target Disk Mode, Recovery mode, disk utilities, or a terminal on a Mac with a T2 chip if they don't have the user's credentials? Lastly, are there any requirements related to the state of FileVault on a Mac with a T2 chip, in terms of booting the device in Target Disk Mode or something similar?

Best Answered by

iBoysoft author Amanda Wong

Amanda Wong

Answered on Monday, February 19, 2024

You can try the possible passwords to unlock the Mac with a T2 security chip, without the correct password, the data cannot be decrypted and cannot be recovered from the Mac.

Apple's second-generation custom Mac silicon, the Apple T2 Security Chip, gives Mac users industry-leading security. It has a Secure Enclave coprocessor, which underpins Touch ID on Macs, secure boot, and APFS encrypted storage. 

It uses the same technology that powers FileVault and requires a password to launch. It is impossible to decrypt data encrypted with the T2 chip if the correct password is not entered. You can try possible passwords, however, the T2 chip will stop processing requests to decrypt data after 220 total tries using different methods, making the data unrecoverable. 

Your data is automatically secured on Macs using the Apple T2 Security Chip or Apple silicon. Enabling FileVault adds an extra layer of protection by preventing unauthorized users from decrypting or accessing your files without your login password.


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