Adobe Accidentally Deleted Years’ Worth of Users’ Photos Forever

The glitch has now been fixed but those impacted can't get their photos back

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This week, an Adobe Lightroom iOS update left thousands of iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch users without any of their original photos saved to the Lightroom app.

Most people use Lightroom to save the original versions of their edited and touched-up photos (an alternative to the iOS image editor). But, in a glitch that has been confirmed by Adobe to be permanent, users lost all of their photos that weren’t backed up to the Lightroom Cloud or elsewhere. 

The glitch didn’t affect Android users and has now been fixed in a new update so that it won’t affect anybody else. But those who were already impacted by the mistake are unfortunately out of luck.

In an apologetic statement, Adobe wrote: “Some customers who updated to Lightroom 5.4.0 on iPhone and iPad may be missing photos and/or presets. This affected customers using Lightroom mobile without a subscription to the Adobe cloud. It also affected Lightroom cloud customers with photos and presets that had not yet synced to the Adobe cloud”.

The company added: “We know that some customers have photos and presets that are not recoverable. We know how frustrating and upsetting this will be to people affected and we sincerely apologize. Some customers affected by this issue might be able to use iPhone and iPad backups to recover photos and presets”.

But for those unfortunate enough to have lost everything (and who are definitely kicking themselves for forgetting to back up their files), it might be unforgivable.