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Apple has implemented advanced data protection, which means even more of your iCloud data can be encrypted with end-to-end encryption. Here's why you might want to turn this feature on and what it means for your privacy.
If you're reading this, you probably know how end-to-end encryption works. For those of you who don't know, here's a quick analogy to help you understand why this is important.
Let's say you write a very personal letter to a friend and mail it to him. Nothing stops someone from stealing an email en route to read what you've written, other than the very real threat of a mail hack.
Of course, the envelope does not allow people to immediately see what you have written. Like locks, envelopes primarily preserve the honesty of honest people.
Now instead of just emailing your friend, say that you used a secret code known only to you and your friend to hide the information inside. Thus, during transmission, the data is practically useless to prying eyes.
Of course, someone can open your letter and look at it, but without knowing how to decipher what is written, this is not very useful for the average underachieving person.
While this is a very simple explanation, end-to-end encryption, or E2EE, works similarly. Apple already encrypts a lot of your iCloud data, such as your text messages and health data.
Which iCloud data Apple auto-encrypted
< p> Apple already has a lot of data that is encrypted by default.
- Health data
- iCloud Keychain
- Wi-Fi and cellular credentials
- Home data
- Payment information
- Siri information
- iMessage and FaceTime content
These are encrypted by default while — value via the Internet — as it is considered critical to your safety. Some of this data is end-to-end encrypted.
Most of it, except for payment data, is stored in iCloud backups, which are stored encrypted — but Apple has the key. Thus, some of them can be obtained by Apple if they are served with a subpoena.
But now there is a way to hide your data from almost everyone — including Apple.
What data does Advanced Data Protection encrypt
< p>Apple's new development Advanced Data Protection takes it one step further and allows you to encrypt additional information in iCloud with several new layers of security.
Data encrypted with advanced data protection
- Device Backup
- Message Backup
- iCloud Drive
- Safari Bookmarks
- Voice Memos
- Wallet Passes
Apple notes that iCloud is the only master data categories that are not covered are Calendar, Contacts, and iCloud Mail because these features need to interact with global systems.
Please note that this is an optional feature and does not run automatically. This is a responsibility issue — if you lose access to your account and cannot access it using the recovery method, your information is effectively locked out forever.
Why you should enable advanced data protection
< p>Encryption protects you from harassment by all sorts of people who don't want anything more than to view your data. Encrypting your data is critical to your security — even if you think you have nothing to hide.
Every day everyone reveals a lot of personal information about themselves to others — our phone numbers, our birthdays, our locations, when we are and when we are not at home.
And, if you're like a lot of people, you might have a Notes file with particularly sensitive information stored on your iPhone. Imagine how dangerous it could be if a third party could easily read this information.
We take pictures of our property, our family members, our houses — things you might not want a stranger to accidentally flip through.
Your data is needed not only by identity thieves. Many data brokers would like to have unlimited access to your most personal information in order to better build their digital profile of you.
They can then sell this data — without interrupting you, of course — to advertising agencies who may see you as easy prey for a quick sale.
Encryption may not completely prevent them from tracking you, but it can certainly prevent them from learning a lot of things they shouldn't know.
Making your data accessible
Of course you're going to want to make sure you can still access your data on all your devices associated with your Apple ID.
This means that it is extremely important to keep everything up to date. Your iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and Apple TV — all.
This also means that if you have unsupported devices, they may lose access to everything encrypted in your iCloud account.
You should also be prepared for the fact that you will lose access to your iCloud account. Apple will automatically prompt you for a recovery person or recovery phrase. So make sure you choose someone who is trustworthy or someone who is easy to remember.
Once you're ready to take the plunge, here's how you can make your account even more secure.
How to enable advanced data protection
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You just need to follow Apple's steps, logins and requirements. to enable this feature.