With the release of iOS 16.2, Apple is offering iPhone users a new feature that it says will protect information “even in the event of a cloud data breach.”
The latest update from the tech giant includes advanced data protection for iCloud, as well as improvements to Apple Music Sing, Freeform, Lock Screen and other features, and bug fixes.
Advanced Data Protection, it says, expands the number of iCloud data categories protected by end-to-end encryption to 23, including iCloud backup, notes, and photos, and provides what Apple says is its highest level cloud data security.
The only major categories of iCloud data that aren’t covered are iCloud Mail, Contacts, and Calendar, due to the need to interoperate with global email, contacts, and calendar systems.
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Apple says that iCloud already protects 14 categories of sensitive data using end-to-end encryption by default.
“Advanced Data Protection is Apple’s highest level of cloud data security, giving users the option to protect the vast majority of their most sensitive iCloud data with end-to-end encryption so it can only be decrypted in your trusted devices”, Ivan Krstić. , Apple’s head of Security Engineering and Architecture, said in a statement.
The feature will make it more difficult for hackers, spies, and law enforcement to access sensitive user information.
In a blog post, Apple said that “enhanced security for user data in the cloud is needed more urgently than ever,” citing research that says data breaches have more than tripled in the past eight years. .
It is available in the US and the feature will start rolling out to the rest of the world in early 2023.
So how can users configure it?
First, update the iPhone
iPhone must be updated to iOS 16.2 before users can participate. Go to Settings, General, and then Software Update.
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Go to iCloud in Settings
After the update, go back into settings, find iCloud, and then Advanced Data Protection.
Configure advanced data protection
Touch Account recovery or Advanced data protection, and then touch Set up account recovery.
Add a recovery contact
Apple suggests choosing a trusted person to help you regain access to your account. You will be prompted to send a message to that contact, who will need to approve the request.
Alternatively, add a recovery key
If you don’t want to trust someone else with your iCloud data, set a 28-character passcode and verify it before enabling it.
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Enter your iPhone passcode
To enable Advanced Data Protection, enter your iPhone passcode.
Associated Press contributed to this report.