Apple releases iOS 17.3 with 'Stolen Device Protection' feature

Stolen Device Protection

Apple Rolls Out iOS 17.3 with Enhanced Security Features

Key Takeaways
  • Apple released iOS 17.3 with a new feature called Stolen Device Protection.
  • Stolen Device Protection adds an extra layer of security to iPhones by requiring biometric authentication for sensitive actions, even when the device is unlocked.
  • This feature aims to protect user privacy in case of device theft or loss.

Apple has released iOS 17.3, a new software update for iPhones and iPads, the third major update to the iOS 17 operating system. This update brings a range of new features, including a significant enhancement to device security with the introduction of Stolen Device Protection.

Stolen Device Protection is designed to safeguard user data in the event of device theft or loss. When this feature is enabled, certain sensitive actions, such as accessing saved passwords, changing the passcode, or making purchases in Safari, will require biometric authentication (Face ID or Touch ID) even when the device is unlocked. This additional layer of security makes it more difficult for unauthorized individuals to access sensitive information on a stolen or lost iPhone.

In addition to requiring biometric authentication, Stolen Device Protection also introduces a security delay for certain critical actions. For example, if someone attempts to change their Apple ID password or iPhone passcode, the change will be delayed by one hour. This delay gives victims of device theft time to report their device as lost or stolen to Apple and take steps to protect their data.

To enable Stolen Device Protection, open the Settings app on your iPhone and go to Face ID & Passcode. Scroll down to the "Additional Security" section and toggle the switch next to "Stolen Device Protection" to the on position.

Feature Description
Stolen Device Protection A new security feature in iOS 17.3 requires biometric authentication (Face ID or Touch ID) for sensitive actions, even when the device is unlocked. This helps protect user data in case of device theft or loss.
Security delay A feature in Stolen Device Protection that delays critical actions, such as changing the Apple ID password or iPhone passcode, for one hour. This gives victims of device theft time to report their devices as lost or stolen to Apple and take steps to protect their data.
Benefits Enhanced security, an extra layer of protection

How to Enable Stolen Device Protection?

Stolen Device Protection can be easily enabled on eligible iPhones and iPads running iOS 17.3 by following these steps:
  1. Go to Settings > Face ID & Passcode.
  2. Enter your passcode.
  3. Under "Additional Security," toggle on "Stolen Device Protection."

Key Features of Stolen Device Protection

Stolen Device Protection introduces several key features that work together to protect user data:
  1. Biometric Authentication for Sensitive Actions
  2. Security Delay for Sensitive Settings
  3. Geofencing Protection

#1) Biometric Authentication for Sensitive Actions

When Stolen Device Protection is enabled, Face ID or Touch ID is required to access saved passwords, make purchases in Safari, and turn off Lost Mode. This additional layer of authentication makes it more difficult for unauthorized individuals to access sensitive information even if they have possession of the device.

#2) Security Delay for Sensitive Settings

Changing critical settings such as the Apple ID password or the device passcode is now subject to a security delay. This delay requires the user to authenticate twice – once with Face ID or Touch ID, and then again after an hour. This extra step significantly reduces the likelihood that someone can quickly and easily reset your device settings and bypass security measures.

#3) Geofencing Protection

Stolen Device Protection can be configured to automatically enable itself when the device is not in familiar locations, such as your home or workplace. This ensures that the extra layers of security are in place when you're most vulnerable.

Conclusion

Apple's introduction of Stolen Device Protection in iOS 17.3 represents a significant advancement in mobile device security. This innovative feature provides an additional layer of protection against unauthorized access to sensitive information in the event of device theft. By combining biometric authentication with security delays and geofencing, Stolen Device Protection empowers users to safeguard their valuable data and maintain peace of mind. As mobile devices continue to play an increasingly central role in our lives, advancements like Stolen Device Protection are crucial in ensuring that user privacy and data security remain paramount.

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