Apple iOS devices* support a useful data security feature called ‘Erase Data’. This feature if enabled (and you use a passcode), will erase all your iOS data after 10 failed passcode attempts. Enabling this feature should be a priority, especially if you lose your device.
The 10 times failed passcode attempts is consecutive, not cumulative and performs the same data erase as General > Reset > Erase all content and settings. Here is how you enable ‘Erase Data’:
- Open > Settings > Tap > ‘Passcode’ option (see note below)
- Turn the toggle on next to ‘Erase Data’
- Confirm the change and tap > Enable button
Note: If you use Touch ID, this option is called ‘Touch ID & Passcode’
IMPORTANT: In the event, you accidentally erase your iOS device, it’s a good idea to regularly backup your device in iTunes, so you can recover your data.
How do you recover your data to your iOS device?
The encryption key will be deleted on the device when using the ‘Erase Data’ feature. You will then be forced into recovery mode to continue with restoring your iOS device, which can be done from a recent iTunes backup. If you don’t backup up your iOS device, your device will be restored as new.
Using a passcode is important. Your passcode can be easily brute forced. There are 10,000 possible combinations that the digits 0-9 can be arranged to form a 4-digit passcode. It is for this reason, you should enable ‘Erase Data’ to protect your iOS device data in the event your device is lost or stolen.
*iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch