Why the iOS 7 Activation Lock Is a Disaster Waiting to Happen

Parents take heed. Your children may use their Apple ID to exact revenge! This may sound far fetched to say the least, but there is more truth than fiction behind that statement. The article below approaches iOS 7’s new Activation Lock woes from a business and theft standpoint, but there is a whole other group that could learn to exploit Apples lock intended to prevent exploitation – minors in possession of any iOS device linked to their personal Apple ID.

photo credit: blakespot via photopin cc

photo credit: blakespot via photopin cc

As a mom of two young girls who will eventually be of the age to have (or at least want) mobile electronics of their own I at first thought the iOS Activation Lock was a great idea. Who is going to want to steal a device or pick up (and keep) one that can’t be used without the ability to unlock it? I’m just a little fuzzy on how this is actually going to help the original owner get their lost or stolen device back. But I digress. . . the next thought that came to mind is how teens could use the Find My Phone for iOS to “get back” at their parents.  Many of my Facebook acquaintances have discussed taking away a favorite electronic device as a form of punishment.  Here and there I’ve heard of moms and dads using the devices to play games, follow social media, listen to music, etc. during the time it’s being “held for ransom” ;).  Also, there are times when siblings are allowed to use the device.  After you read the article below you will completely understand what I said above.  IF your child is allowed to activate an iOS device with their own personal Apple ID and YOU the PARENT does not know the ID and password of the account be prepared for the worst.  Your child can very easily use the Find My Phone feature to brick (deactivate and erase) the confiscated device (iPhone, iPod, iPad or even MacBook) and render it useless until their account information is used to unlock the device.

My advice to you as parents – If you bought the device, even as a gift, for your minor children DO NOT allow them to use a personal Apple ID account to activate the device.  Create one for them and make sure you have sole access to changing the passwords.  This not only prevents the above situation from being a disaster, but also allows you to keep tabs on what apps your child is using.  No, this is not an invasion of privacy.  This is you protecting your most precious and valuable, still immature person in your life.   We live in an unfortunate time in history where people’s ability to exploit and take away our children’s innocence can be done from across the country or the other side of the world without your kids even having to leave your living room.

What do you think of the new iOS 7 Activation Lock feature?

There’s no question that the iPhone 5S and iOS 7 together make for the best phone ever made. The din of offhand, dismissive criticism from the Android fan base that Apple never innovates should be silenced, at least for awhile, given that Apple now sells the only dual-tone LED flash; the only 64-bit mobile CPU; the only 64-bit OS; the fastest touch-screen performance phones by far; the only wide-scale deployment of Multipath TCP; and the only useful, usable and widely used fingerprint scanner ever placed on any consumer electronics device. Yes, there’s plenty of petty grousing . And who knows what competitors will ship tomorrow? But today, it’s clear that Apple rules the smartphone market. The Android fan critics now also have to contend with a razor sharp, concise rebuttal to the cacophony of general criticism of Apple by Apple VP Craig Federighi: “ New is easy. Right is hard. ” He said that after referring to Samsung by saying that Apple “didn’t start opportunistically with 10 bits of technology that we could try to find a use for to add to our features list.” Ouch! Unfortunately, iOS 7 is going to cause some huge problems that nobody is talking about yet, but will do when the unwanted bricking epidemic starts. The Looming Activation Lock Crisis Everybody’s praising iOS 7’s new Activation Lock. And, yes, it’s a great feature. Activation Lock bricks your iPhone or iPad when you report it lost or stolen with Find My iPhone. Once bricked, the device cannot be used by whomever is in possession of it. This is a great deterrent for “Apple Picking” crimes where thieves deliberately look for white earbuds to jack Apple devices based on their high re-sale value. Activation Lock is great, but also introduces new problems. In addition to […]

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