iOS VPN App
In the past few years, there has been a worrying trend where state actors and other organizations purchase spyware from private corporations for targeted attacks on well-known individuals. To combat this alleged mercenary malware pandemic, Apple has provided a really original approach.
Lockdown Option is a new security mode available on iOS 16, iPad OS 16, and MacOS Ventura. It is in fact intended for the small number of users who are the victim of state-sponsored spyware and other types of attacks. What does it do in practice, then?
Apple has a long list of actions that are taken when Lockdown Mode is activated, including:
- Links previews and all message attachment types other than photos are disabled.
- Unless the user has already called or requested something from you, incoming Apple-related invitations and service requests (such as Facetime calls) are denied.
- Your iPhone cannot connect by wire to your computer or other equipment.
- Installing configuration profiles and signing up for mobile device management is not permitted.
To put it another way, this is a stringent security feature designed to drastically lower the likelihood that a hostile actor will put spyware on your iPhone. Apple also states that it will gradually add more capabilities to the mode.
In any case, this is a feature we haven’t seen on official stock Android or significant Android skins before (with the possible exception of efforts like Graphene OS). In order to provide targeted people like journalists and activists with additional peace of mind, we’d want to see something similar come to standard Android.
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