Apple’s stolen iPhone advice lists the final step – after having erased the device – as:
- Remove your lost or stolen device from your list of trusted devices.
However, it is clear from the “If the previous owner isn’t with you” section of How to remove Activation Lock that this will remove the lock and allow the thief to use/sell the phone. This has been discussed previously and it also seems clear that the erased and logged-out device will not pose a security risk to your account. It thus seems like terrible advice. Furthermore, it is not hard to find examples of people removing their device too soon (such as before it has been erased).
I can only see this step as adding value to thieves. It would surely be better to instead provide additional warnings when removing a device of what the consequences are for Find My and activation lock etc. Why would Apple possibly advise this? Are there any advantages to doing it?