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Use restrictions to prevent purchasing on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

Learn how to use restrictions to protect your iTunes Store account from unintentional or unauthorized purchases. After you enable restrictions on your device, you can require a password for purchases, prevent certain types of purchases, or disable purchasing completely.

Enable restrictions

  1. Go to Settings > General > Restrictions.
    Restrictions option in Settings.
  2. Tap Enable Restrictions.
    Enable Restrictions option on iPhone.
  3. Choose a restrictions passcode that you'll remember and confirm your passcode. Make sure to choose a passcode that's different from the passcode you use to unlock your device.
    Set Passcode screen on iPhone.

Prevent in-app purchases or disable purchasing

After you enable restrictions, you'll see what's allowed on your device. To prevent only in-app purchases, turn off In-App Purchases. If you want to disable purchasing completely, turn off iTunes Store, iBooks Store, Installing Apps, and In-App Purchases.

Restrictions screen set to disable all purchasing.

You can also prevent purchases by removing your payment method from your account.

Require a password for each download

If you don't want to prevent in-app purchases or disable purchasing completely, you can require a password for downloads on your device. After you enable restrictions, Tap Require Password, then choose an option.

  • Immediately: If you choose this option, you'll have to enter your Apple ID password each time you make a purchase or download a free item.
  • 15 minutes: If you choose this option, you'll enter your Apple ID password once, and you won't have to enter it again for any other purchases (except in-app purchases) you make in the next 15 minutes.
    iPhone screen showing Require Password option in Restrictions.Options on Require Password screen.

Manage your child's account

If your child is over 13 or has an account through the Apple ID for Students program, you might want to let them make purchases from iTunes using iTunes Gifts or a monthly allowance. If you use Family Sharing, you can let your child initiate purchases with Ask to Buy.

The iTunes Service is only available for individuals aged 13 years or older or children under 13 who have received an Apple ID through the Apple ID for Students program. If your child is under the age of 13 and isn't an educational Apple ID holder, Apple must close and delete all information associated with their account, and you can't use the monthly allowance program.

Learn more

Using restrictions, you can also control access to certain applications, features, and content types.

Last Modified: Sep 18, 2014
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  • Last Modified: Sep 18, 2014
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