(Pocket-Lint) – While at WWDC in June 2022, Apple announced a new privacy feature, called Safety Check, to help you quickly stop others from accessing your location and information. The company has developed it as a protection tool for users trying to escape from abusive relationships.
Here’s what you need to know about security checks.
What is Apple Security Test?
Apple has loaded iOS, the operating system that runs the iPhone, with a number of privacy features in recent years, and the latest is a new tool – Security Test – coming with the iOS 16 software update. Security checks will help you easily and quickly disable sharing your location in an emergency. Many people share passwords and access to their devices with their partners. But in the case of abusive relationships, as Apple mentioned in WWDC 2022, it can threaten your security and make it difficult for you to get help.
Apple is working with U.S. agencies that support victims of domestic and intimate partner violence, such as the National Network to End Domestic Violence, the National Center for Victims of Crime, and WESNET (The Women’s Services Network). The result of that conversation is Safety Check, a new section of the Settings app where you can quickly review and reset access given to others. “This allows people to quickly revoke access to their data and location abusers in objectionable situations,” Apple said.
Key features of the security test:
- Stop sharing location with others through Find My app
- Resets system privacy permissions for all apps
- All your other devices sign you out of iCloud
How does Apple Safety Check work?
You can access the Safety Check in the Settings app. When you open Safety Check, you see two options:
- Emergency reset: Instantly reset access to all people and apps, and review the security of your account.
- Manage sharing and access: Customize which individuals and apps can access your information and review the security of your account.
If you are in an emergency and would like to quickly revoke access to your information, including your location, select the first option, Emergency Reset. The second option, Manage Sharing and Access, is when you have time to review who you have granted access to, and you can audit what permissions you have granted to certain apps.
What happens if you hit an emergency reset?
If you select Emergency Reset in Safety Check, Apple will not notify anyone that you have stopped sharing with them, but they may notice that sharing has stopped. Apple will warn you that you will stop sharing with all people and it will revoke sharing access from all apps. It will also change your Apple ID password and force you to review the security of your account.
Can Safety Check stop others from seeing your message?
Yes. Security checks help you sign out of iCloud on all your other devices, protect access to your messages, and limit messages and facetime on your handheld device.
When will the security check be available?
Security Check is a new feature in iOS 16, with a free update coming to the iPhone this autumn. The public beta for iOS 16 will be coming out for anyone to check out this summer.
Written by Maggie Tillman.