Password-locked iPhone: how safe is data on lost iPhone

Discussion in 'iOS 6' started by katewes, Dec 30, 2012.

  1. katewes, Dec 30, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2012

    katewes macrumors 6502

    Jun 7, 2007
    The news item on crime in New York City - due to high theft of Apple products - prompts me to ask: if I've set an immediately-activated password lock that activates when I turn off the phone, how safe is my data if the iPhone is stolen?

    The thing is, if the iPhone was so bullet-proof safe, why would the thieves steal them in the first place? Obviously, it's because the iPhones can be re-used. So, when stolen iPhones -- which had passwords -- are re-used, does that mean the data is wiped by the thief in order to re-use it, or can the thief get at my data?

    I read articles that iOS 5 & 6 are so secure, and yet there are also articles advising us - once the phone is stolen -- to change all our passwords and email addresses etc. Why would that be needed, if the data is safe?

    I'll be in New York City soon for half a year, and will need to use the subway every day, even at night - so my question is more than academic. (When traveling on the subway during safer hours i.e. not at night, I intend to use the iPhone to read Kindle books during the longish subway journeys to and from Brooklyn.)

    I'm not so worried about losing the phone since it'd be covered by insurance, but it's the data I'm worried about.

    p/s I use iOS 5, and haven't yet upgraded to iOS 6 because of reported poor battery life on iOS6 - but I can be persuaded to upgrade if iOS 6 it is significantly more secure. Other than that, I really don't need any of the new features of iOS 6, particularly abhor Facebook integration.
  2. thewitt macrumors 68020


    Sep 13, 2011
    Your data is secure unless you use a password like 0000....

    You should use an alpha password for the highest level of security, but a good random number password is fine as well.

    The data is encrypted.

    The phone can be easily reused by initializing it, which wipes all content and makes it look like a new, empty phone.
  3. Beeplance macrumors 68000


    Jul 29, 2012
    Should be alright, just don't set a predictable password like 1234 (yes, some people do things like this, thinking they can outsmart others). Or you may want to disable simple pass-code option and set a password with alphabets for higher security/difficulty.:)

    Or you can get one of the reputable password-protecting apps which is used to protect sensitive information. Not sure exactly how they work though, cos I don't use them.
  4. Gav2k macrumors G3


    Jul 24, 2009
    There stolen because there easily wiped and sold on. Nothing to do with stealing your data really ;)

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