Feeds

iPhone passwords not worth the paper they're written on

Push two keys to bypass password

Top three mobile application threats

iPhones protected by a password aren't actually protected at all, as just by pressing a few keys a miscreant can access all the phone's functions without needing the password at all.

The trick, reported by MacRumours, is simply a press of the "Emergency Call" key from the passcode entry screen, followed by a double-tap on the home button. That takes the miscreant into favourites, from which they can access the address book, from which they can get into the e-mail client (by tapping a contact's e-mail address) or the browser (by tapping a URL).

Clearly Apple has missed a trick here, and a fix should be quickly forthcoming, but it bodes badly for a device which is trying to sell itself into the enterprise and is already under fire for lacking important security features.

Concerned users can secure their devices by disabling the home button double-tap (Settings > General > Home Button > Checkmark Home), though it really shouldn't be working at all at that point.

Users might argue that a device password should never be relied upon, but one that is so trivial to bypass makes a mockery of the very concept. It's unlikely that this security problem will do more than attract ridicule to the iPhone security model, but it's ridicule that Apple could do without while they're trying so hard to have the iPhone taken seriously as a business device.

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
Virgin Media so, so SORRY for turning spam fire-hose on its punters
Hundreds of emails flood inboxes thanks to gaffe
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
AT&T threatens to pull out of FCC wireless auctions over purchase limits
Company wants ability to buy more spectrum space in auction
Turnbull leaves Australia's broadband blackspots in the dark
New Statement of Expectations to NBN Co offers get-out clauses for blackspot builds
Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India
Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?
Facebook splats in-app chat, whacks brats into crack yakety-yak app
Jibber-jabbering addicts turfed out just as Zuck warned
Google looks to LTE and Wi-Fi to help it lube YouTube tubes
Bandwidth hogger needs tube embiggenment if it's to succeed
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.