In 2014 British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) reported that about 742,000 people suffered from phone theft between 2012 and 2013. Astonishingly, most of these victims were iPhone owners. Five years later, in 2019, San Diego NBC reported that iPhones accounted for more than half of the phones registered missing that year.
Today, most people store their personal information on communication devices; a person stealing your iPhone can steal many things that matter. But one may ask, “How can I keep such valuable information from other people’s reach?”
The following five tips may prove to be of help.
1. Wipe Clean Before Selling
Sometimes you may need to dispose of an iPhone for an upgrade, give a friend or relative, or for some other reason, let someone else use it. To safely do this, ensure that you disconnect your iPhone from your Apple account.
Doing this ensures that the device does not continue syncing on your device and past pieces of information are secure. You can erase all data and settings through the following steps.
- To reset, go to General.
- At the bottom, tap on “Reset.”
- Then tap “Erase all Content and setting.”
Erasing everything ensures that your next iPhone, as well as your iCloud account, are secure. If you intend to take your device for an iPhone screen repair, you do not need to wipe all data because the iPhone does not need to be unlocked while you’re away.
2. Disable Lock Screen Notifications
Passwords keep our data and information secure. However, even with the most robust password, your data might still be at risk when messages, emails, and other apps notifications show on the lock screen. At times, sensitive information such as confirmation codes, contacts, appointment info, financial data, etc., may be revealed, and hackers might use this to their advantage. In short, the less an iPhone displays on a lock screen, the safer it is to use.
The main benefit of disabling the lock screen notification is that strangers do not have an insight into any incoming information while on a lock screen. To prevent the lock screen notifications, observe the following steps:
- Go to the phone’s “Settings.”
- Enter “Notifications”
- Get to the “Show previews” section.
- Set as “Never”
3. Use 2FA for iCloud and Apple ID
When it comes to locking your phone, one lock is enough. However, two security locks can make your phone even more secure. Therefore, you should strive to retain this setting. In the latest iPhone versions, two-factor authentication is a default setting. However, this is not the case in earlier models.
When using two-step verification, you register a trusted device (one within one’s reach and control). The device receives 4-digit verification codes through the “Find my iPhone” service or SMS. Once activated, when another device enters your iTunes, iCloud, iBook, App Store account, or tries to manage your Apple ID, a prompt to enter the password, as well as the verification code, comes up.
This two-step verification process is beneficial since it alerts you when someone else signs into your account and at the same time adds a layer of security to your data. To turn this on, you can follow these simple steps.
- Go to settings
- Go to your iCloud (profile name) account.
- Enter “Password & security.”
- Tap on “Turn off authentication.”
- You can then follow the simple instructions to turn it on.
4. Avoid Automatic WiFi Connections to Known Public Networks
iPhones have the capability of automatically connecting to previously connected WiFi hotspots without authorizations. This setting may sound convenient as you may not need to switch from mobile internet to the WiFi connection.
However, it may also be a compromise in disguise as cybercriminals can establish a fake network using the name of the public hotspot and hijack your iPhone without your knowledge.
To avoid such scenarios, ensure that you know every hotspot you are using, or turn the automatic connection option off.
- Go to settings
- Tap on WiFi
- For the public WiFi hotspot, tap the info icon.
- Then turn off “auto-join.”
5. Turning off Cookies in Browsers
Websites usually store cookies on devices. At times these pieces of information may contain your personal preferences. Cookies help you stay logged in on some websites and show ads that interest you. Cybercriminals can also tap on these pieces of information as they can use them to log onto websites and services as you.
Turning off cookies might seem to be a disadvantage, but, in the end, your data will be more secure. Blocking cookies is different on various browsers, and you may need to look out how to do it on yours.
Hackers can steal your information whenever they can lay their hands on your devices. Whether you lost your device or got hacked when connected to a public network, you may end up in more serious trouble when the sensitive information you saved on your iPhone leaks. At all costs, you need these five effective tips to keep your iPhone secure all the time.