How to make your iPhone more secure

An acquaintance approached me the other day and asked me if there’s a way stop information from appearing on the lock screen of his iPhone. The iPhone displays quite a bit of personal information even when your phone is locked, which raises security and privacy concerns for some people.

For instance, when your screen is locked you can still see text messages sent to you and you can reply to them with a message, you can view your schedule for today, view any notifications that you’ve received and of course, access Passbook.

Iphone lock screen

Additionally, you can get quite a bit of personal information from Siri. For instance, you can ask: “What is my name?” or “What is my address?” This could, of course, be problematic should someone with nefarious intentions get a hold of your phone.

You can also perform several phone actions while your screen is locked using Siri. For instance: “Hey Siri, send message to John Smith” and Siri will send out the message on your behalf. Someone can also access your contact list using Siri. For instance, if you say “Call Mike” and you have several people named Mike in your contact list, Siri will display the first and last name of each person whose first name is Mike.

So is any of this of concern? Possibly. It depends on how often your phone is lying about just waiting for some dodgy character to pick it up and have some fun. I personally keep all of Siri’s features turned on as my phone is never out of my range of sight and I enjoy the convenience of these features. If you are a little more security conscious however, you can turn off specific features of Siri or turn it off altogether when your phone is locked.

To turn off the “Hey Siri” feature which allows you to access Siri without pressing the home button, choose Settings > General > Siri and toggle the Allow “Hey Siri feature to off. You can completely turn off Siri from here by toggling off the Siri feature.

Siri lock screen

If you wish to turn off specific features from appearing on the screen when your phone is locked, you’ll need to delve into the Touch ID & Passcode settings, as outlined below.

Restrict or allow screen lock features iphone

To Stop Specific Items from Appearing When Your Phone is Locked

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Tap Touch ID & Passcode
  3. Enter your passcode.
  4. To prevent your “Today” items from appearing when the screen is locked, swipe the Today toggle to the off position.
  5. To prevent your “Notifications” items from appearing when the screen is locked, swipe the Notifications toggle to the off position.
  6. To disable access to Siri when the phone is locked, swipe the Siri toggle to the off position.
  7. To disable access to Passbook when the phone is locked, swipe the Passbook toggle to the off position.
  8. To prevent the ability of replying to messages when the phone is locked, swipe the Reply with Message toggle to the off position.