7 amazing tips to Protect Your iPhone and Privacy in 2024

6 Min Read

Apple has always been committed to privacy and honestly, an iOS device is more privacy oriented than an android device. However, you can tweak a few settings on your iPhone to preserve your personal privacy even more.

Apple prides itself on setting a high standard for user privacy and data security on every device it makes. However, your iPhone might not be as secure as you think.

It’s true that iPhones are more difficult to hack than their Android competitors, as they are produced by one manufacturer dedicated to keeping them secure. Tons of companies manufacture Android devices, which means greater risk of vulnerabilities.

However, malicious attackers have found creative ways to steal your sensitive data from the iPhone apps collecting it on a daily basis. They could grab your browsing history, personal images, current location, and even passwords without your knowledge.

What’s more, Apple has no control over where your information travels once it’s collected by apps. Some app providers harvest and sell your data, which means that iPhone privacy concerns go well beyond the risk of hacking.

The good news is that, there are many steps you can take to minimize your risks, and they are all FREE. Below, we’ll detail the best ways to protect your privacy on your iPhone, so that none of your sensitive information ends up in the wrong hands.

Why It’s Important to Keep Your iPhone Private

The possibility of someone watching you or sharing pictures and videos of you without your knowledge is disturbing at the least, and dangerous at worst. Unfortunately, it can happen, and it’s just one of many ways your iPhone can put your privacy at risk.

Hacking and Malware Risks

Security researcher Felix Krause found out that hackers can spy on you through your iPhone camera, thanks to apps they create by abusing iOS permission settings.

When you download an app from the App Store, it asks your permission to access different features of your iPhone – your camera, photos, location settings, and much more. Once you give permission to the app, it can access those features each time the app runs.

That means an app compromised by hackers can silently snap photos and record videos of you, or even run facial recognition software in an attempt to steal your identity.

Besides making you vulnerable to spying, compromised apps could infect your iPhone with malware.
your iPhone to download third-party apps not offered by the Apple Store greatly increases the risk of a hacking or malware attack.

With that in mind, the first step toward securing your data and device is quite easy, since all you have to do is nothing: Do not jailbreak your iPhone.

Device Theft

We’ve all had those moments of distraction, not realizing we left our Smart phones at the coffee shop or grocery store until hours later. Then panic sets in. Passcodes and a fingerprint touch ID should prevent anyone who finds your iPhone from accessing your data, but will they, really?

In spite of these security measures, there is a chance a dishonest person who finds your iPhone could get into everything – your contact lists, your messages, and so much more.
See also:
Found a Lost or Stolen iPhone? Do These Things!

Data Harvesting and Other Privacy Concerns

Although your iPhone’s security features do their job and no one ever accesses your phone without your Consent, your privacy is still at risk any time you use an app. App providers and your ISP continuously collect your data, often selling it to third-party data brokers.

At a minimum, the sale of your data means you’ll be dealing with the annoyance of targeted marketing – and remember, these advertisers know your phone number. But the effects of data harvesting could be far worse than that.

Much of the data collected about you makes its way to agencies that run background checks. So whether the information is accurate or not, your data can be used against you when you make critical life decisions, such as buying a home or finding a new job.

Some sites suggest that the best way to protect your privacy is to delete all your iPhone apps, but doing that basically turns your $800 device into a flip phone. Here are some more practical tips to secure your iPhone and your data.

The Seven Best Ways to Keep Your iPhone Protected

So the hard truth is that although we’d like to imagine iPhone security risks as far-fetched scenarios, iPhones have very real vulnerabilities. The good news is that, there’s no reason to panic.

These seven simple tips will give your iPhone the boost of protection it needs to combat almost any security threat.

#1. Set a strong passphrase

It may sound obvious, but the first step is to defend your privacy from those who have direct access to our iPhone. Our smartphones holds sensitive information, personal photos, work emails and much more. Yet, I bet many of you have your date of birth as your phone’s unlock code. Bad idea!
Instead, create a robust and unpredictable password to protect your iPhone from the curious snoopers or malicious thieves.
Also, be sure to activate
Face ID or Touch ID,
so you don’t have to type in the long password every time and greatly improve the usability of your iPhone.
Here’s how to do it: Head over to Settings -> Face ID/Touch ID & Passcode and set an alphanumeric password. Also be sure to carefully select what you want to be available from the lock screen. For instants, you may need to disable the Notification Center or Wallet, or maybe shut Siri down, which is sometimes a little too indiscreet. Lastly, if you use your iPhone for work and have really important Data, you can have all your data deleted after 10 failed passcode attempts, to make sure your data doesn’t go into the wrong hands.
Setting a password for your iPhone has another benefit, the data stored inside it is encrypted, making impossible to access it without unlocking the Device. Even if you connect it to a computer or take it apart, you can’t access the information inside it.

#2. Check your Find My settings

Find My
is a Super useful feature that allows you to locate your iPhone in case it gets lost all stolen. Make sure you have enabled this feature to have the possibility to delete the contents of your iPhone in case of loss, preserving your privacy.
Also make sure you don’t activate the sharing of your location with your friends, unless you want to do it on purpose.
To manage these settings: head over to Settings -> Apple Account Management -> Find My -> Find My iPhone.
See also:
How To Track a Lost iPhone, iPad, or Mac With Find My

#3. Check your location settings for Apps

Our location is arguably the most sensitive information inside our iPhone. So be sure to give each application permission to access your location only when necessary.
Of course we have to give permission to navigation apps, otherwise we won’t get directions, but maybe we can revoke permission to access our location to a video game or bank app.
To do this: head over to Settings -> Privacy & Security -> Location Services to find the list of installed apps. For each of them you can select whether to allow access to the location, and eventually let the application use GPS in the background as well.

#4. Check your location settings for System Services

Most iPhone users do not know that iOS itself uses the position very often. Thanks to the location our iPhone can give us personalized suggestions. For instants, it can send a notification with traffic information, calibrate the compass or provide targeted advertising.
By heading over to Settings -> Privacy & Security -> Location Services -> System Services we have the option to disable some entries, so that we can limit the amount of data collected by our iPhone operating system for the various suggestions.

Disable the access to your location for the System Services you don’t need
From the same screen you can also disable location data that is otherwise used to improve Apple products.

#5. Check your privacy settings for Apps

What most threatens our privacy are the applications. When we download an app from the App Store we are often asked to give access to a series of permissions, and most of the time we allow permission without paying too much attention, perhaps because we are in a hurry to use the app just downloaded.
In this case it’s good to apply a golden rule: give an app only the permissions strictly necessary for its operation.
By heading to Settings -> Privacy & Security we can choose which applications to allow access to our contacts, our reminders, our calendar, our photos and much more. As we did for the localization, it’s a good idea to ask ourselves: “is it really necessary to authorize this app to access these data of mine?
Always use common sense: it’s obvious that an app that manipulates photos should be able to access our gallery, but it shouldn’t have access to our microphone. It’s obvious that a messaging app needs access to our contacts, but you probably don’t need to allow it to access our health data.

#6. Uninstall useless Apps

As I pointed out, applications are what most endanger our privacy. Applications represent a point of access to our iPhone, a way in which developers, often unknown, can gather a range of information about us.
Some applications may also have vulnerabilities that can be exploited by hackers to attack our iPhones and steal our Data.
So, try to only install the apps you really need, keep them updated, and delete them when you no longer need them. This way, we limit the possibility of our data being exposed to malicious attackers.

#7. Hide notification previews on lock screen

The last tip is to deactivate the notification preview when the screen is locked. This prevents other people from being able to see your messages and other potentially sensitive information.
If you are the owner of the iPhone and you have Face ID, you just need to look at your Device to see the previews. Otherwise, you will only have to place your finger and use Touch ID.
To disable the Notificationpreviews: head over to Settings -> Notifications -> Show Previews.
See also:
14 Tips To Protect The Private Information On Your iPhone ..

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GeeksModo Staff is a team of iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple Watch experts led by Moses Johnson. We're passionate about all things Apple!
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