We live in an amazing time where we have small supercomputers in our pockets. So many precious things are packed inside it. Like the minerals that are unethically sourced in Africa to make them. Of course pictures and videos of loved ones, too. So, it naturally sucks if someone were to steal your device. Now, Apple can’t outright stop the theft. They can make it that much harder for thieves to use or even sell the devices.
Passcodes are the worst
Last week, it was reported by The Wall Street Journal that Apple has included a new feature in the iOS 17.3 beta. It is called Stolen Device Protection. When enabled, it will require a user to use biometrics to do specific tasks on the device.
This all seems to be in response to multiple reports of people losing phones after a passcode has been stolen by the would be thief. They would do this by watching the user input the code. This would then allow the user to access the phone after stealing it to do whatever they wanted. This could easily be thwarted by using biometrics or an alphanumeric password, but it is still a problem.
To opt in to this feature, you’d need to use your phone’s biometric of choice when doing secure tasks. For most people, this is a thing you should already be doing. I guess this feature seems to force it on users.
The only thing of note that this feature seems to add. There is an additional step when trying to change your Apple ID password or iPhone passcode, or turning off Find My. If you are doing these steps while not at a trusted location like your home or office, you’ll need to verify yourself through biometrics then try doing it again in an hour.
iPhone data encryption has long led the industry, and a thief can’t access data on a stolen iPhone without knowing the user’s passcode. In the rare cases where a thief can observe the user entering the passcode and then steal the device, Stolen Device Protection adds a sophisticated new layer of protection.”
Apple spokesperson Scott Radcliffe
While I am a proponent of security over convenience, I can see this going horribly wrong at one place. A mobile carrier store. Imagine having this enabled. You are about to upgrade your iPhone to the next one with one of those trade-in deals. You’re now in the store for much longer.
This is a case for buying online.
Source: The Verge