iOS: Understanding data protection
Data protection is a feature available for devices that offer hardware encryption, including iPhone 3GS and later, all iPad models, and iPod touch (3rd generation and later). This article outlines how to enable and verify data protection.
iPad, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation)
Data protection enhances the built-in hardware encryption by protecting the hardware encryption keys with your passcode. This provides an additional layer of protection for your email messages and attachments. Third-party applications can use the data protection APIs in iOS 4 and later to further protect application data.
Enable data protection by configuring a passcode for your device:
- Tap Settings > General > Passcode.
- Follow the prompts to create a passcode.
- After the passcode is set, scroll down to the bottom of the screen and verify that the text "Data protection is enabled" is visible.
Use these passcode settings to maximize passcode security:
- Set Require Passcode to Immediately.
- Disable Simple Passcode to allow the use of longer, alphanumeric, passcodes.
- Enable Erase Data to automatically erase the device after ten failed passcode attempts.