Apple has bolstered iPhone security by addressing vulnerabilities associated with conventional passcode protection. The use of easily obtainable four- or six-digit codes posed a significant risk, enabling thieves to gain full control over stolen devices. To counter this threat, Apple has introduced a new layer of security called Device Theft Prevention.
Stolen Device Protection Mode
Reports from The Wall Street Journal indicate that the beta version of iOS 17.3 incorporates a feature known as Stolen Device Protection mode. This functionality leverages geographical data to detect irregularities in a user’s device location. If the iPhone is detected in an unusual place based on the owner’s typical usage pattern, additional authentication measures are automatically triggered.
Strengthened Security Protocols
Under this new system, sensitive actions like altering security settings now demand more than just a digital passcode. Face ID facial recognition is required for authentication, and critical changes such as modifying the Apple ID password or disabling Face ID entail a mandatory one-hour delay and re-verification through Face ID.
Apple’s initiative aims to thwart smartphone thieves who previously exploited opportunities to acquire access through stolen passcodes. These perpetrators often observed or coerced individuals into revealing their passcodes in public spaces, compromising device security.
The delay in implementing significant changes upon detecting device movement outside typical usage zones allows owners to block the device promptly in case of theft. This proactive approach prevents the sale of a functioning iPhone with full access on the black market, encouraging its sale for parts instead, notes NIX Solutions.
Apple’s introduction of robust security measures seeks to impede attackers targeting its devices. While owners can disable Stolen Device Protection, doing so heightens the risk of sensitive data falling into the wrong hands if thieves possess a valid access code.