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iOS 7 Bug Allows Disabling of 'Find My iPhone' Without Password

A bug in the current version of iOS 7 appears to allow users to disable Find my iPhone on a device without typing in a password, which effectively hides it from being located on iCloud.com.

Deactivating Find My iPhone takes just a few simple steps and it can be easily repeated on devices running the current version of iOS (7.0.4). The exploit involves making a few simple changes to the iCloud account section of the Settings app.

Video via Bradley Williams

MacRumors has been able to successfully replicate this bug on an iPhone and an iPad running iOS 7.0.4, but could not get it to work on a device running iOS 7.1, so the flaw will likely be fixed with the upcoming update.

This is a potentially serious bug as Find My iPhone is a useful method of locating a lost device. While this exploit does disable Find My iPhone and allow for an iOS device to be erased, it does not remove Apple's Activation Lock theft deterrent system. After being erased, the device will remain locked to the original account and continue to ask for that Apple ID and password during the setup process to resume functionality.

The bypass only works on a device that does not have Touch ID or a Passcode enabled, as the exploit requires access to the Settings menu. To avoid having Find My iPhone disabled, users should update their phones with a Passcode and install iOS 7.1 when Apple releases the software.

MacRumors has contacted Apple for comment on the exploit and we will update if we receive new information.

Top Rated Comments

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10 weeks ago
Don't you folks at MacRumors realize that by posting a thread like this, you tip off thieves to a way of successfully thwarting Apple's find-my-iphone security. Maybe this should not be posted?!?!?!? Now you've given every thief who monitors this site a head start until Apple fixes. Well done MacRumors!!!!
Rating: 30 Positives
10 weeks ago
You first have to unlock phone so this whole hack is useless for thieves..
Rating: 21 Positives
10 weeks ago

Don't you folks at MacRumors realize that by posting a thread like this, you tip off thieves to a way of successfully thwarting Apple's find-my-iphone security. Maybe this should not be posted?!?!?!?


I'd rather want to know about these issues to be aware of security risks, especially when there is an effective solution to this bug:

The bypass only works on a device that does not have Touch ID or a Passcode enabled, as the exploit requires access to the Settings menu.

Rating: 19 Positives
10 weeks ago
good thing everyone has passcode enabled. right, RIGHT???
Rating: 16 Positives
10 weeks ago
This is there to remind people to set up a passcode to unlock the iPhone to begin with. remember, the can't exploit this if the can't get past the lock screen.
Rating: 12 Positives
10 weeks ago
This is why you use a pass code folks. This is also why Touch ID is awesome, since it addresses convenience, one of the main reasons people don't use pass codes.
Rating: 11 Positives
10 weeks ago
"Don't you folks at MacRumors realize that by posting a thread like this, you tip off thieves blah blah"

Teachable moment: the way to ensure that security flaws get fixed asap, as they should be, is to release information about them publicly.

I know it seems counter-intuitive, but the fact is that trying to keeping exploits hush-hush until they can be fixed doesn't work. Those who could fix the problem take longer to get around to it, thieves always find out anyway, and the only people in the dark about the situation are legitimate device owners.

Now all of us know about the problem and several ways it can be prevented or mitigated. To withhold that information would have been blind and stupid.
Rating: 9 Positives
10 weeks ago
I don't keep a password on my iPhone but this could never happen to me. :)

Settings, General, Restrictions, Accounts, DO NOT ALLOW CHANGES

This means iCloud along with all my email accounts, etc. are "greyed out" in Settings and cannot be modified without enabling changes in Restrictions which requires my passcode.
Rating: 8 Positives
10 weeks ago

There is always some obscure security bug that affects iOS. I find it astonishing that Apple done know about them and equally that people find them.


Keyword - OBSCURE.

Stuff happens. Apple will fix it quickly.
Rating: 7 Positives
10 weeks ago
There is always some obscure security bug that affects iOS. I find it astonishing that Apple done know about them and equally that people find them.
Rating: 6 Positives

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