How To Protect Your Apple ID

Aadhya Khatri - Dec 03, 2019


How To Protect Your Apple ID

Apple ID is of great importance as it links all of your Apple devices together. Losing it and you are in a big trouble

Apple ID is of great importance as it links all of your Apple devices together. Losing it and you are in big trouble. If someone else gains access to your account, they can see all of the data stored on your personal devices. They can even change the login credentials and ransom you to get your data back.

Lock Down Your Apple ID

The risk is huge, but not many people actually anything to protect their Apple ID. Mostly because they do not know how to do so. You are not professional, so what you can do is limited; however, if you follow this guide, you can add up barriers to prevent bad actors from penetrating.

You can apply all of the below measures or just some of them because this is a layering approach, meaning you do, the more secure your Apple ID is.

Update Your Password

Passwords are something we know how important they are, but we rarely make an effort to make them hard-to-guess. Here is how you can change it. Log into appid.apple.com and choose “Edit,” you can find it near the Security heading.

You are able to see when the last change was made. It is usually ages ago, or maybe your current password is just too simple. Select “Change password,” and a pane will show up for you to type in the new one.

Apple-ID-password-change
Passwords are something we know how important they are, but we rarely make an effort to make them hard-to-guess

Password managers, including Safari’s inbuilt mechanism, 1Password, or LastPass, are an ideal way to generate a hard to crack passphrase and make sure that you do not forget it the next time you need it to log in.  Do not recycle passphrases though, if you do, once one of your accounts is hacked, others sharing the same password will be too.

Whenever you think that your account was compromised, sign out from all of your connected devices

Sign Out Of Old Devices

As you own more devices in the Apple ecosystem, your Apple ID will be shared by more of them. Before you sell anything, sign out of the device and wipe it clean so that the new owner does not accidentally gain access to your data or your accounts.

To check all of the devices your Apple ID is tied to, go to the website for Apple ID and locate the Devices section. For each item you choose, you will see their serial number, model, and OS version. If you use Apple Pay, those that can use this service are marked.

To cut tie of any device, select “Remove from account.” After confirming the action, any information for Apple Pay will also be wiped out. If you change your mind later, you will have to sign in all over again.

Turn On Two-Factor Authentication

Apple’s two-factor authentication will send a code to trusted Apple devices, like an iPad, an iPhone, Mac running OS X El Capitan and later, and iPod Touch with iOS 9 and later.

Apple-ID-two-factor-authentication
Apple’s two-factor authentication will send a code to trusted Apple devices when you want to sign in from a new one

If you want to activate two-factor authentication, here is how. On a device running iPadOS or iOS, open Settings and select your name. The next step is to type in the information of the trusted device. If you do this on a Mac, that path is through System Preference, iCloud, Account Details, and them Security.

The Security section of your Apple ID allows and encourages you to add more phone numbers to secure the account. However, do not insert someone else’s; instead, use the ones only you and you alone have access to.

Please bear in mind that this two-factor authentication system has an innate flaw. As you can sign in and add a number to receive the code, if someone gets hold of your Mac, he or she can do the same thing and gain access to your Apple ID.

Apple-ID-Two-Factor-Authentication
Two-factor authentication can be turned on or off as you wish

So to tie up this loose end, add a layer of protection to your Mac with passwords or Touch ID.

And another thing to remember, never make use of the autofill feature on your browser.

Create Impenetrable Security Answers

A reliable alternative to two-factor authentication is security questions. While questions like your mother’s names or your nickname are easy to think of and use, they can be an easy guess for anyone wanting to hack your accounts. Now is the time of social media, and everything bad actors want to find is stored there.

Apple-ID-security-questions
Since the questions cannot be changed, you can take the matter into your own hands by changing the answers

Since the questions cannot be changed, you can take the matter into your own hands by changing the answers. It can be anything from inaccurate or silly. The only problem is what if you forget it? In this case, the password manager is the answer.

Be Wary Of Phishing Emails/Text Messages

Phishing attacks try to lure you into signing in with your Apple ID, and then whoever behind it can steal your credentials. There are several different approaches, but most of them will try to scare you by saying something like your accounts have been hacked or someone purchased something with your account.

Apple-ID-scam-phishing-attacks
Phishing attacks try to lure you into signing in with your Apple ID and then whoever behind it can steal your credentials

Whatever you do, do not click on the included link in these emails. The bad actors will make an effort so that the websites these emails linked to look exactly like something from Apple, but they are not.

Whenever you are in doubt of a potential phishing scam, contact Apple for support of what to do. The call might take you a few minutes of your time but better safe than sorry as once your Apple ID is compromised, it is always challenging to get back the control of it.

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