The latest version of iOS (17.3) for iPhone, iPad, etc. has a new security feature that adds additional theft protection should you ever have your iPhone/iPad stolen and the person in possession knows your passcode. Yes, criminals have figured out a way to observe you entering your passcode when you are out in public.
When this feature is enabled, and the device is away from a familiar location, some additional security steps are required that prevent the thief from being able to make changes to your device and related accounts, such as resetting your password. First, go to Settings > Privacy & Security > Location Services > Systems Services > Significant Locations. Tap to make sure Significant Locations is turned on.
To set this up, you must first upgrade your iOS to 17.3 – as of February 9, 2024 we are on 17.3.1. You must also have two-factor authentication established with your Apple ID account and have already set up either the FACE ID or Touch ID feature.
To enable Stolen Device Protection, go to:
- Settings and tap FACE ID & Passcode
- Enter your device passcode when prompted
- Scroll down and tap the “Stolen Device Protection” and turn On.
Should your device ever be stolen by someone that has your passcode, they will be challenged with the Face ID or Touch ID if they are not in a familiar place such as home or work. In addition, when in an unfamiliar location, a one-hour security delay timer begins, which can also only be turned off with Face ID or Touch ID. The security delay prevents any changes to the security settings or your AppleID account.