iPhone XS Max Help me secure my teen’s iphone

ashenfang

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 1, 2012
111
16
Long story short, I need help securing my teenagers iPhone XS Max from installing apps or making changes to the phone. I have tried using restrictions but being the sneaky ****** he is, he found a way around that. Apparently, the restrictions passcode can be retrieved by using free software on the internet. Using this software, a backup copy of the phone is made via usb connection to the computer. This backup copy can then be “explored” to find the passcode saved within.

Is there a way to block usb data connectivity via restrictions? Surely there is a way to protect the phone and keep him access stuff I don’t want him doing. Thanks.
 

now i see it

macrumors 601
Jan 2, 2002
4,129
8,141
If he is clever enough to find a workaround to iOS restrictions... then locking his iPhone down won't do one bit of good. He'll figure something else out and resent you more because of it. There comes a time when you've got to let go. Trying to put iPhone lockdown restrictions on a teenager seems absurd.
 

joeblow7777

macrumors 603
Sep 7, 2010
5,995
6,780
At that point he has not demonstrated his ability to respect you. I would sell the iPhone and get him a dumb phone.
honestly that was my first thought. if he won't respect the rules then he gets a no text, no camera flip phone until he's 18 and buys the phone and the service for himself.
I have to say, I agree. A smartphone is not a right, it’s a privilege. If your son isn’t paying for the phone and doesn’t respect the boundaries you’ve laid out, why does he get to keep it?
 

Ifti

macrumors 68020
Dec 14, 2010
2,220
409
UK
Put his Apple ID on Family Sharing and set it on YOUR device that permission must be granted for downloading apps.

My daughter isn't like this, but I do have it set up this way. It forces her to ask me so I know what she is downloading.
This is exactly what I do with my kids iDevices - whether its iPhone or iPad.
Every time an app is purchased it pings up on my phone and I have to approve or decline the request.

In addition I have their devices registered to the 'Circle' app on my phone, which is compatible with my Orbi WiFi setup. Hence I can disable the internet at any time while at home (when its bed time for example). Granted, an easy workaround for the iPhone is to switch WiFi off and use data instead, but they haven't done that just yet..... lol

My 11 year old daughter got an iPad for her birthday and we found she was on it all the time, to the point we would hardly see her out of her room. Hence now she only has access to it for a limited time on weekends. Every Sunday evening she now places the iPad on my desk where it stays for the week.

You have to lay the ground rules, otherwise the device gets taken away. Simple as.
 

badatusernames

macrumors regular
Jul 1, 2018
204
372
Sounds like you have a bigger problem at hand. My sister has a friend and her daughter is only 4-years old and demands to use her to the point where during certain times during the day the mother can't use her OWN phone.
 

derekamoss

macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2002
859
446
Houston, TX
Or if you happen to have an old iPhone around like let's say iphone4 make him use that since he can't really install anything probably wants on it due to it being incompatible ios version

Going from the phone he has now with screen size and such going to a tiny phone to that pretty much to them like it would be for use to go to a flipphone now
 
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1rottenapple

macrumors 68020
Apr 21, 2004
2,381
615
I agree with what people are saying. At this point flip phone. He hasn’t demonstrated the ability to be trustworthy knowing he is breaking a rule you have set. He can play that block game or worms lol.
 

bpeeps

macrumors 68030
May 6, 2011
2,911
2,541
Dang, ya'll are harsh. So glad my parents picked and chose their battles instead of stressing over every little thing I did on the computer. There are so many of us who grew up without crazy parental restrictions and we turned out just fine. Not saying that works for everyone, but there's not a lot of context here for such harsh judgements.

If he is clever enough to find a workaround to iOS restrictions... then locking his iPhone down won't do one bit of good. He'll figure something else out and resent you more because of it. There comes a time when you've got to let go. Trying to put iPhone lockdown restrictions on a teenager seems absurd.
Seriously. I'm also assuming OP's kid is on the older side and not thirteen since they're that creative in finding workarounds. You can't smother your kids forever, sometimes they do need to learn from their own mistakes.
 
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derekamoss

macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2002
859
446
Houston, TX
Dang, ya'll are harsh. So glad my parents picked and chose their battles instead of stressing over every little thing I did on the computer. There are so many of us who grew up without crazy parental restrictions and we turned out just fine. Not saying that works for everyone, but there's not a lot of context here for such harsh judgements.


Seriously. I'm also assuming OP's kid is on the older side and not thirteen since they're that creative in finding workarounds. You can't smother your kids forever, sometimes they do need to learn from their own mistakes.
Dang, ya'll are harsh. So glad my parents picked and chose their battles instead of stressing over every little thing I did on the computer. There are so many of us who grew up without crazy parental restrictions and we turned out just fine. Not saying that works for everyone, but there's not a lot of context here for such harsh judgements.


Seriously. I'm also assuming OP's kid is on the older side and not thirteen since they're that creative in finding workarounds. You can't smother your kids forever, sometimes they do need to learn from their own mistakes.
Dude I was so you growing up but Context is needed though. I don't have a teen but I would like to think I give it to my teen and explain rules about the phone. if he never breaks them then a don't need to lock it down. However if he does then I start to lock it down and then if he circumvents that yeah its time for a huge lesson. There is a big difference from when we were young messing with technology and im assuming you were like me, messing around on the computer meant waiting for your parents to sleep so you could dial up to AOL and go in a chat room you weren't supposed to be in, or have that hidden folder where you were downloading a 5 min naughty video on kazaa or limewire that had to go all night hoping you didn't get disconnected. I'm all for learning by experimenting but when it possibly comes to my kid could be installing tinder for hookups on their phone or otherstuff than yeah you have to place limits and make them respect it.
 

Mac03ForLife

macrumors regular
Sep 19, 2017
152
25
Washington, DC
Just accept defeat. hes a smart boi dude. I would just throw in the towel and use physical removal of the device like my parents do. Hell of a lot simpler imo
 

ChrisChaval

macrumors 6502a
Aug 30, 2016
547
463
MGTOWn
This is exactly what I do with my kids iDevices - whether its iPhone or iPad.
Every time an app is purchased it pings up on my phone and I have to approve or decline the request.

In addition I have their devices registered to the 'Circle' app on my phone, which is compatible with my Orbi WiFi setup. Hence I can disable the internet at any time while at home (when its bed time for example). Granted, an easy workaround for the iPhone is to switch WiFi off and use data instead, but they haven't done that just yet..... lol

My 11 year old daughter got an iPad for her birthday and we found she was on it all the time, to the point we would hardly see her out of her room. Hence now she only has access to it for a limited time on weekends. Every Sunday evening she now places the iPad on my desk where it stays for the week.

You have to lay the ground rules, otherwise the device gets taken away. Simple as.
once the family setup is completed you can add limits via screen time

you also can see which app your kid is using and for how long and add app specific limits

iOS really does help parents here
 
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BasicGreatGuy

Contributor
Sep 21, 2012
11,843
10,847
In the middle of several books.
Control freak much
It isn't about being a control freak. It is about being a responsible parent who loves his child, and wants the very best for him. And at times, that involves tough love.

A human brain isn't fully formed until age 25.

A teenager, as mature as some are, should not be left to his or her own devices. Children need rules, guidance, and most of all, a parent who isn't afraid to remind the child who pays the bills and who is in charge.
 
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bluespark

macrumors 68000
Jul 11, 2009
1,857
1,996
Chicago
Circle by Disney. It's a hardware device that sits on your network and lets you apply a customizable profile (i.e. young child, child, teen, adult, unmonitored) to every person in the house and to choose what profile automatically attaches to each device that joins your wifi. There's also a fairly inexpensive monthly service that lets you install a profile directly on your child's devices (or on yours) that will apply the same settings when on other networks. It works, and also lets you set time limits or pause the internet on devices belonging to selected family members. You'll also be notified if your child disconnects the Circle device or uninstalls a device profile -- you can let your child know you will take the device away if that happens.

Use that in conjunction with Apple's parental controls that let you approve/disapprove specific apps, etc.
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Control freak much
With kids/teens, part of your job as a parent is doing what you can to keep them safe, to expose them to positive influences, and to limit their exposure to negative influences. To figure out how much is too much, you have to assess risk. Is the greatest probable harm going to result from the limits you set or the limits you failed to set? If the latter, you have to set limits.
 
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MEJHarrison

macrumors 65816
Feb 2, 2009
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I'm not touching the punishment phase of this thread!

After you've squared things up with your child, I'd encourage you to find constructive ways to explore his "hacking" skills. It sounds like he might have done some impressive work getting around his restrictions. While his skills might have been used for evil in this circumstance, they might also put money in his pocket some day. It seems like that ought to be encouraged, while discouraging that manner in which those skills were put to use.
 

derekamoss

macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2002
859
446
Houston, TX
I'm not touching the punishment phase of this thread!

After you've squared things up with your child, I'd encourage you to find constructive ways to explore his "hacking" skills. It sounds like he might have done some impressive work getting around his restrictions. While his skills might have been used for evil in this circumstance, they might also put money in his pocket some day. It seems like that ought to be encouraged, while discouraging that manner in which those skills were put to use.
I'm going to tell you one thing I learned from my nieces and nephews fast. Some of them are tech savvy and some don't have a clue but they still managed to "hack" their way around phone restrictions, computer restrictions, etc not out of wit or skill but by this one same teacher who literally has the answers to any thing they want.... His name is YouTube. Kids watch youtube videos for EVERYTHING. How to make a sandwich to how to dry their butts off after the tub. They literally watch other people playing games instead of playing them....