With the release of iOS 12, predictably users have a lot of different questions about privacy and security. It seems that a lot of iPhones are still prone to being hacked as seen by the leaks of private photos and videos of celebrities. The good news is securing your iPhone is not too difficult, and once you get the proper protocol in place, your iPhone becomes a hard target. Hackers are not looking to unlock hard targets; they want soft targets. Just keeping your iPhone secure motivates hackers to move along.

Strong Passcode

There are several different actions to take when configuring your iPhone for privacy and security. These steps are easy. Basically, if you know how to set up VPN on iPhone you have the ability to configure your iPhone to have a strong security posture. As you read through the article, have your iPhone out so you can make the adjustments along with the article and enjoy the peace of mind coming from knowing your iPhone is not one that hackers wish to mess with.

Use the USB Restricted Mode

An easy way for hackers to get access to your iPhone is connecting via the USB port. This is one of the new features on iOS 12 and is great for folks in all types of environments. The way this works if your lock screen has been set for more than an hour folks can’t use connected devices to get around the lock screen. Besides hackers, this also prevents police from unlocking your phone without your consent.

Initiating this setting is quite easy. Open up your phone and head to the Settings menu. Once there, find Touch ID & Password. You’re then prompted to enter your password. Find the USB Accessories option and make sure it is set to Off. For the iPhone X, you have to enter the Face ID menu and then go through the same process. Once this is all set, the only way to use USB accessories is to unlock the phone.

Get a VPN

Get a VPN

People who understand privacy love the Virtual Private Network, or VPN. VPNs encrypt your actual IP address through a process called tunneling. The IP address that’s used by the VPN to request access to a site is a dummy IP address. The VPN’s server provides this fake IP address and you’re able to browse without having anyone track your data.

Setting up a VPN is easy. You’ll have to pay for a worthwhile VPN, but the price is quite affordable. Once you download the selected VPN from the App store, open the VPN. Go to the Settings area and Select a Location. This is the server you will connect with. Make sure to connect with a server providing you access to all the sites you want to see. You can do so from the country you’re in, or if you’re in a country that restricts internet, choose a country with unrestricted internet.

Turn on Automatic Updates

Automatic updates do more than just keep your installed operating system and programs running at peak efficiency. These updates also close the holes hackers use to penetrate a program and steal your data. Having automatic updates run without requiring your approval keeps your iPhone secure.

The way to set up your automatic updates is by going into the Settings menu. Once you’re there, find the General tab and then under that tab you will find Software Update. This is where you make the selection to have your iPhone automatically update the apps and the iOS system.

How to Configure Your iPhone for Internet Privacy and Security

Use a Strong Passcode

In the past, the iPhone only utilized four-digit passcodes that most people slotted their birthday into. This is the opposite of secure, because your birthday is displayed everywhere including on Twitter. However, Apple saw the light and now offers six- and eight-digit codes along with the option to make your own customized code that’s up to 12 digits.

Getting set up with your custom passcode is very easy with your iPhone. Go to the Settings menu and select Touch ID & Passcode. Select Change Password and then choose Custom Numeric Code. Make sure this is a code only you would know, and don’t keep the code written on your phone somewhere – put it on a piece of paper.

Embrace Two-Factor Verification

The derision of two-factor verification is because it is cumbersome and doesn’t seem to offer much in the way of security. Except this is one of the best ways to keep your iPhone secure. A hacker may get your code but without the phone in hand, they are unable to do the next step. The good news is Apple has made it easier to input the second level of verification because if you have your phone it will just automatically insert.

There’s no better time than now to set up two-factor verification. Go to Settings on your phone and select Password and Security. Once there, you will see an area where you can select Turn on Two-Factor Authentication with a simple tap. Follow the prompts and you will be very secure with your new style of verification.

Password Maintenance

It goes without saying your passwords must be changed every few weeks and that your passwords should include capital and lowercase letters with numbers and symbols. Don’t have the same password for every account and don’t store your passwords on the iPhone or give the phone the ability to save passwords.

To change passwords for different sites, go into Settings and then Passwords & Accounts. At this point, click on Website & App Passwords. You will enter your code, and once you’ve changed the password, tap Change Password on Website icon. Now your passwords are safe and secure.


Apple is constantly trying to find ways to help folks get the security they need for peace of mind. With the release of iOS 12, Apple is once again helping their customers get the most secure product on the market.

iLounge author Lucy Bennett

Lucy Bennett is a Contributing Editor at iLounge. She has been writing about Apple and technology for over six years. Prior to joining iLounge, Lucy worked as a writer for several online publications.