The new iOS 16 Lock Mode can protect you from cyber attacks. How to use it

This story is part of Hotspot iPhone 2022CNET’s collection of news, tips, and advice on Apple’s most popular products.

You don’t have to worry every day about being targeted by a state-sponsored cyber attack. But just in case, Apple released a new feature with iOS 16 that can protect your iPhone and the information stored on it (and other Apple devices).

In the past few years, governments and organizations from all over the world have used winged horse – A program created by the cybersecurity company NSO Group – to spy on activists, journalists and politicians.

Pegasus is meant to help governments track down criminals and terrorists, but it’s also maliciously used to secretly read text messages, record phone calls, and steal important files. It can even be used to turn on the iPhone’s camera and microphone to create new recordings.

That’s why Apple has released a security feature that you can use to protect your iPhone from these types of attacks. Called Lock Mode, the new iOS 16 setup is designed to fight attacks from malware and spyware like Pegasus.

Read more: Pegasus Spyware and Citizen Monitoring: What You Need to Know

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This is not the first step Apple has taken against Pegasus and its maker. In September 2020, Apple released a software update Address Pegasusallowing any potential victims to receive threat notifications should they be compromised.

Again, the chances of you being attacked in this way are very slim, but you still need to know how to protect yourself.

Here’s what you need to know about Lockdown Mode on your iPhone. If you have not installed iOS 16 yet, Here’s how And the Three things to do next.

What does lock mode do?

Lockdown provides “a maximum and optional level of security for a very small number of users who, because of who they are or what they do, may be personally targeted by some of the most complex digital threats”, According to Apple. Those targeted by Pegasus are “very few users”.

Essentially, Lock mode increases security features on iOS by restricting certain functions that might be vulnerable to attack:

  • Most message attachments, other than images, are blocked, and features such as link previews are disabled.
  • Web technologies, such as just-in-time compilation of JavaScript, are disabled unless you exclude them from Lockdown Mode.
  • Incoming calls and service requests, such as FaceTime calls, are blocked if you haven’t contacted the person before.
  • All albums shared in Photos are removed, and any new invites to shared albums are blocked.
  • Any wired connections between your iPhone and your computer or accessory are blocked.
  • Configuration profiles, such as Apple’s public beta files, cannot be installed.
  • Your device cannot be registered in Mobile Device Management.

What devices support lock mode?

Currently, you can use Lockdown Mode on any Apple device running iOS 16, iPadOS 16, or macOS Ventura. Could you Download iOS 16 to your phone Currently.

Read more: Is my iPhone running iOS 16? What you need to know

How to Enable Lock Mode on iOS 16

As long as you are running iOS 16, you can easily turn on Lockdown Mode within seconds. All you have to do is go to Settings > Privacy and security > Close the situationread the description, click Turn on lock mode then hit Play and restart.

Your iPhone will reboot immediately, after which lock mode will be enabled. If you go to Safari, you’ll see a Lockdown Enabled or Lockdown Ready banner at the top of the page, which indicates that Lockdown mode is already on and locking your iPhone.

Configure lock mode settings

While the Lockdown mode offers extensive security, you have a way to tweak it to better suit your needs.

As mentioned above, websites in Safari are very limited when you are in locked mode, but you can bypass these restrictions by excluding a specific website. To do this, launch Safari, navigate to the website you want to exclude, and press AA > Website settingsAnd the switch out lock mode and press turn About. The logo at the top of the site should now read Lock Off.

To view all excluded websites, go to Settings > Privacy and security > Close the situation and press Web browsing configuration at the bottom of the page.

How to disable lock mode

Do you need to turn off lock mode?

go to the Settings > Privacy and security > Close mode, press Turn off lock mode then hit Shutdown and restart. When your iPhone restarts back up, Lockdown mode will be disabled and you will be able to use your iPhone as normal again.