Feeds

iPhone passwords not worth the paper they're written on

Push two keys to bypass password

The essential guide to IT transformation

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.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Déjà vu: Virgin Media jacks up broadband prices
Screw copper phone lines, we're UNIQUE, bleats telco
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
UK mobile coverage is BETTER than EVER, networks tell Ofcom
Regulator swallows this line and parrots it back out at us. What are they playing at?
What's the nature of your emergency, Vodafone?
Oh, you've dialled the wrong number for ad fibs, rules ASA
EE network whacked by 'PDP authentication failure' blunder
Carrier is 'aware' of cockup, working on a fix NOW
ROAD TRIP! An FCC road trip – Leahy demands net neutrality debate across US
You crashed watchdog's site, now time to crash its ears
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?