iOS 12 Includes Setting to Disable USB Access When an iPhone Hasn't Been Unlocked for More Than an Hour

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by MacRumors, Jun 4, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    In iOS 12, there's a new setting that will effectively put an end to law enforcement access to iPhones and iPads using USB devices like the GrayKey box, preventing USB accessories from connecting when it's been more than an hour since the iPhone was last unlocked.

    Located under Touch ID & Passcode, the new setting, which requires a passcode to be entered to allow a USB accessory to connect after an hour, is enabled by default.


    You can toggle off the setting to allow USB accessories to connect at any time, but most users are likely going to leave this set to the default setting as there's not a whole lot of benefit to turning it off. With this turned on, you'll need to enter your passcode for a data connection to the iPhone using a USB device, such as when you connect it to iTunes on a computer, but charging via the Lightning port will continue to work fine.

    The new setting is of interest because it's an expansion of USB Restricted Mode, a feature Apple toyed with during the iOS 11.4 beta. USB Restricted Mode was designed to disable USB access to the Lightning Connector after 7 days, but iOS 12 cuts that time period way, way down.

    Law enforcement officials use USB access to an iPhone or an iPad to connect accessories like the GrayKey box, a tool that plugs into the Lightning port of an iPhone and uses the data connection in an attempt to brute force a passcode.

    With the new setting, an iPhone's Lightning port data connection will not work with the GrayKey box if it's been more than an hour since a passcode was entered, rendering it effectively useless unless used immediately after an iPhone is obtained from a suspect.

    Law enforcement officials are likely going to be unhappy with the changes Apple is making in iOS 12 because it's going to make iOS 12 devices a lot harder to get into, but from a customer point of view, this setting offers protection from hackers and other bad actors who may be able to get ahold of this kind of technology.

    Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

    Article Link: iOS 12 Includes Setting to Disable USB Access When an iPhone Hasn't Been Unlocked for More Than an Hour
  2. Mr. Heckles macrumors 6502

    Mr. Heckles

    Mar 20, 2018
    This is just awesome! I’m glad it’s an hour and not a week.
  3. Khedron macrumors 6502a

    Sep 27, 2013
    In before that guy who's been professionally cracking iOS for a decade tells us he already knows how to bypass this setting.
  4. Robert.Walter macrumors 65816

    Jul 10, 2012
    Should also be triggered when a phone is put into SOS mode and whenever TouchID/FaceID is disabled.

    If it’s not doing that, that would seem to be an oversight.
  5. BC2009 macrumors 68000


    Jul 1, 2009
    Somebody was saying this could be bypassed since it was a software change, but if this works then it is awesome.

    My way around GreyBox was to use an alphanumeric password that would take a very long time to guess. Touch ID makes it so I rarely have to enter that password.

    This is a setting that I will leave turned on -- for sure.

    I just wonder if this is just the next step in the move / counter-move.
  6. thefredelement macrumors 65816


    Apr 10, 2012
    New York
    Can't it just be right away except for things (apps / hosts / etc.) I explicitly allow (if possible?), if not, right away would be great... I think someone else said this on an 11.4 thread maybe or I read it somewhere but the more I think about it the more it makes so much sense, why wouldn't it be turned off unless the device was unlocked or the relationship was established as trusted?!?
  7. Lerxt macrumors regular

    Nov 30, 2012
    This is one of the things I love Apple products for, the way Apple takes genuine steps to protect privacy. Keeep on doing this and i'll be a customer forever.
  8. dontwalkhand macrumors 601


    Jul 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
  9. Scottsoapbox macrumors 6502a


    Oct 10, 2014
    So if you brick your iPhone, does this prevent restoring from iTunes?
  10. Mr. Heckles macrumors 6502

    Mr. Heckles

    Mar 20, 2018
    I agree, but it’s better than a week. I wish I could make it that the port doesn’t transfer data at all unless I unlock it.
  11. scrapesleon macrumors 6502a


    Mar 30, 2017
    Good I’m going to toggle it on I don’t mind entering my passcode
  12. mujtaba.mir macrumors 6502a


    Oct 16, 2014
    Don’t see the toggle on an iPhone X, can see the text about one hour warning though.
  13. justiny Contributor


    Jul 28, 2008
    Fairfield, NJ
    I’m perfectly fine with law enforcement officials being unhappy about this.
  14. jeremiah256 macrumors 65816


    Aug 2, 2008
    Southern California
    It's the simple things like this that makes iOS so valuable to me. Love it.
  15. WiiDSmoker macrumors 65816


    Sep 15, 2009
    Hermitage, TN
  16. jermwhl macrumors regular


    Sep 29, 2014
    San Diego, CA
    I was wondering why this was listed under "political, religious, and social issues". I guess this is why, lol.
  17. Princejb134 macrumors 6502

    Jul 22, 2012
    what are you hiding?
    i just had a 4 digit pin lol
  18. Wowzera macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2008
  19. BWhaler macrumors 68030


    Jan 8, 2003
    This is why I love you Apple and suffer your crappy keyboards.

    This, and privacy against Facebook, Google, and the other spyware companies out there.

    Thank you for your leadership and care.
    --- Post Merged, Jun 4, 2018 ---
    My understanding is yes. It’s data which is shut down.
  20. BasicGreatGuy Contributor


    Sep 21, 2012
    In the middle of several books.
    Thanks for the article, MR. Great feature, Apple. Will definitely leave it toggled off (default setting);
  21. Mr. Heckles macrumors 6502

    Mr. Heckles

    Mar 20, 2018
    Banking info, emails, contacts of friends and family, photos, personal info, and more. No one needs to see this info unless I let them. Period.
  22. rorschach macrumors 68020


    Jul 27, 2003
    I would imagine not. This feature exists to protect user data. Restoring erases that data. The police aren’t taking phones just to get a new phone; they want they data.
  23. PBG4 Dude macrumors 68030

    PBG4 Dude

    Jul 6, 2007
    I think the question here is if DFU mode reactivates USB connectivity to the lightning port, can there still be a way to break into the phone?
  24. Dodgeman macrumors 65816

    Nov 30, 2016
    Apple out here doing a 1st! This is good news. I admit Apple takes peoples personal security seriously.
    They should probably lower this down to a half hour, or even 15 minutes.
    Put a really long pin code in, and it'll be next to impossible to crack.

Share This Page