Last year, the American Wall Street Journal reported that more and more iPhone owners not only had their device stolen, but also had their protective security pin unlocked stolen.

The crooks observed the iPhone owner for a long time before the theft.

Misuse of the banking apps installed on the device caused significant damage.

Stories like this have never been heard in Europe.

Probably not because bank transfers require two-factor authentication.

Michael Spehr

Editor in the “Technology and Engine” department.

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    Apple has, however, given more importance to research and, with iOS 17.3, which was distributed this week, has introduced an additional security wall against this misuse option.

    In the settings you can activate the “Protection for stolen devices” switch under “Face ID & Code” or “Touch ID & Code”.

    By default it is disabled.

    It doesn't work without biometrics

    If the backup function is active, there are some new hurdles for unauthorized use: Access to passwords that are saved in the iCloud Keychain requires authentication with facial recognition or, on older devices, with a fingerprint.

    The unlock code alone is not enough.

    Previously, a thief with a hijacked iPhone could lock out the legitimate user from their Apple account by quickly changing the password.

    It's not that easy anymore.

    A password change can only be done outside of home or work with a facial scan or fingerprint.

    After waiting four hours, you have to authenticate yourself a second time with your biometric feature.

    Now the thief might have the idea to change the trusted phone number or request a recovery key.

    This also only works after biometric authentication twice and a waiting period of one hour.

    Last but not least, the activated device protection is also protected against deactivation using the same procedure.