It’s a question we’ve had lots of people contacting us with recently, wondering whether they should be worried about someone potentially hacking their iPhone remotely. In this article, we want to set the record straight on a few things, as well as give out some handy advice that will help protect you in the future. So, if you’re one of the people asking yourself, “can someone hack my iPhone remotely?”, then you should read on…
In a rush? You can protect yourself using Certo iPhone- just click here.
Is it possible to hack an iPhone remotely?
It might surprise you, but yes, it is possible to remotely hack an iOS device. On the bright side; however, that it will almost certainly never happen to you. Let me explain:
1. Remote-hacking software is exceptionally expensive.
There have been cases of hackers gaining access to an iOS device remotely (for example Pegasus and the WhatsApp hack earlier this year), but the exploits required to hack a device remotely are incredibly specialized and expensive, often in excess of $100,000. That means in order to make it worth a hacker spending that much money – you would have to be a very high-value target. The good news is that, well, most of us aren’t.
The reality is that this is something that most of us really don’t need to worry about. Not only is it rare for most hackers to be able to afford this type of software, but for those who can, it drastically increases their financial risk, and most hackers are more likely to target the ‘low-hanging fruit’. By that, I mean they are much more likely to want to find cheaper alternatives in the hopes that they might be granted an easier way into someone’s device or personal data.
2. Apple patch any vulnerabilities almost as soon as they find them.
Apple takes the security of their devices very seriously (they wouldn’t even let the FBI use their ‘backdoor’), so they are always assessing the potential risks to their software. As soon as they discover a vulnerability or a bug in their system – they fix it. They release an update, and every iPhone, iPad or iPod is suddenly protected from those security threats.
This is one of the benefits of using an iOS device compared to, for example, an Android device. Android’s operating system runs in various different builds across a range of different devices. This makes it hard for Google to roll out a big update that will patch security threats for every device, whereas, for Apple, it’s much more simple.
3. Some companies claim to offer remote-hacking of an iPhone, but it won’t work for most users.
The basic idea behind these services is that they allow an attacker to extract information from a backup of your device stored online with iCloud. If they do gain access, they have the ability to see things such as your messages, photos, call logs, internet history and anything else that was saved on your device at the time of the backup.
However, as most people are using two-factor authentication with their Apple IDs, this means that the hacker would still need physical access to the device to disable two-factor, meaning that in most cases this attack is not truly remote.
This is one of the reasons why we tell our readers and customers that it’s important to enable two-factor authentication on all of their devices and online accounts wherever possible.
You can read more about this type of hack in this article.
What can you do to protect yourself?
Although the risk of being hacked remotely is quite low, as we’ve pointed out, it’s not impossible. So, here are a few extra steps you can take if this is something you are particularly worried about. These are also good general tips to follow if you’re concerned about your iPhone security in general:
1. Install Certo iPhone.
Our revolutionary software is designed to help you stay ahead of painful security threats. We protect your device from the various methods that hackers use on a daily basis to attack and gain access to your personal data. We ensure that your device remains protected and will help you manage any potential areas of risk. We can also detect if your device is, or has ever been, compromised in any way, recommending further steps of action in order to stay secure.
The main thing we offer, though, is peace of mind. We want you to feel safe that your device is secure, and your data is protected.
2. Enable two-factor authentication.
This one is pretty simple, and it’s something that everyone with an Apple ID should do. Two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security and ensures that someone can’t access your iCloud account and device backups, even if they’ve worked out your password.
Click here to learn how to enable two-factor authentication for your Apple ID, or just follow along with the steps outlined below:
To enable two-factor authentication on iOS 10.3 or later, do the following:
- Go to your ‘Settings’ app.
- Go to [your name], then ‘Password & Security’
- Tap ‘Turn on two-factor authentication’ then tap ‘continue’.
If you’re using a device with iOS 10.2 or earlier follow these steps instead:
- Go to your ‘Settings’ app.
- Navigate to, and tap on, ‘iCloud’.
- Then go to your Apple ID and tap ‘Password & Security’
- Tap “Turn on two-factor authentication’ then ‘continue’
It’s worth noting that you may be asked to answer some security questions to access your Apple ID.
So, now you know that being hacked remotely isn’t something that you should necessarily be worried about. That said, it is possible for someone to monitor your iPhone remotely if a hack has already been implemented, and spyware is already installed. That’s why it’s important to always be vigilant about your mobile security – even when using a so-called ‘unhackable’ device such as an iPhone or iPad.
Click here to learn more about protecting your iPhone from spyware and how to find out who hacked it.