How to Encrypt Your iOS Device's iTunes Backup

by

If you connect your iOS device to your computer to back up your data instead of using iCloud, some of your most private data is not backing up. For security reasons, by default, an iTunes backup will not include saved passwords, Wi-Fi settings, website history, or Health data.

itunes_encrupted_backup_1
You can save information like passwords and website history in an iTunes backup if you encrypt it, which is an option that Apple offers. Encrypted backups are not the default option, but for those of you who want to be able to save more comprehensive backups to your computer, we've created a tutorial that walks you through encrypting iTunes backups and removing that encryption.

If you back up your iOS device using ‌iCloud‌, you do not have to follow any steps for encryption, as ‌iCloud‌ backups are automatically encrypted for you.

itunes_encrupted_backup_2

  1. Connect your iOS device to your computer the way you normally do.
  2. Open iTunes if it doesn't open automatically when you connect your device and let your device sync normally.
  3. Select your device in iTunes. Then click "Summary."
  4. In the Backups section, check the box for "Encrypt iPhone Backup."
  5. You will be asked to create a password. Make sure it is something that you won't forget. You can remember the password in your keychain.
  6. iTunes will create a new full backup of your device's data and will also overwrite and encrypt previous backups.
  7. Wait for the backup to finish. Then, check to ensure that it was properly encrypted. Go to Preferences from the iTunes toolbar. Then select Devices. If the backup was encrypted, you will see a lock next to it.

A password is required to enable and make changes to your encrypted backups. If you can't remember the password for your encrypted backup, you can sync your iOS device using ‌iCloud‌ instead. It's best to use a password manager to save your encryption password, because there is no way to recover information or turn off encryption if you forget the password.

itunes_encrupted_backup_3
If you decide not to use an encrypted backup anymore, you can disable it.

  1. Connect your iOS device to your computer and open iTunes.
  2. Select your device from the menu. Then click "Summary."
  3. Uncheck the box for "Encrypt ‌iPhone‌ Backup."
  4. Enter the password you created to enable the encrypted backup.
  5. Wait for the backup to finish.

Now that you know how to enable encrypted backups, you can sync all of your private information to iTunes, including passwords and Health and Fitness data.

Tag: iTunes

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
68 months ago

Sure am glad that this rather obscure piece of information that relatively very few people will ever have the need to read is on the front page of MR today. Keep up the quality content, guys!

Actually, it was somewhat informative - I never knew that it'll save passwords & website history if you do an encrypted backup...
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
68 months ago
Sure am glad that this rather obscure piece of information that relatively very few people will ever have the need to read is on the front page of MR today. Keep up the quality content, guys!
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
68 months ago


and don't forget folks, always check whether checked checkboxes have been properly checked!

which one of these checkboxes do you tick to call your mother to come pick you up?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
68 months ago
This article could be useful for the readers with impaired sight.
"[X] Encrypt iPhone backup. This will allow account passwords (...and Health...) data to be backed up."
This notice has been there for many, many years.

Can somebody repost the missing articles
How to backup Your iOS Device in iTunes
How to check checkboxes using the Magic Trackpad
and don't forget folks, always check whether checked checkboxes have been properly checked!
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
68 months ago
The following statement need correction:

"For security reasons, by default, an iTunes backup will not include saved passwords, Wi-Fi settings, website history, or Health data."

All passwords (including ones to Wi-Fi access points) are saved in the device keychain. Keychain data *IS* always included into device backup, but if the backup does not have the password set, then the keychain is encrypted using the "hardware" key unique to every device (and this key is not being changed even after device reset). That means that if you reset from such (not encrypted) backup to the new device, most keychain data is lost. In contrary, if backuip is password-protected, then keychain is encrypted using the key derived from this password (and so can be restored to any other device -- if, of course, the password is known).

Website history is always included into backup. Health data is not.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
68 months ago
Check the checkbox?! Check!
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

When Will the iPhone 12 Launch? Here's What We Know

Wednesday September 16, 2020 6:12 am PDT by
Yesterday's "Time Flies" Apple event saw the release of the Apple Watch Series 6, Apple Watch SE, iPad 8, and iPad Air 4, but no new iPhone models. Rumors before the event strongly alleged that it would not see the unveiling of new iPhones, with many reports pointing to an October launch. The lack of new iPhone models yesterday seems to confirm that the iPhone 12 lineup will not appear...

iOS 14 Picture in Picture No Longer Working With YouTube's Mobile Website in Safari [Without Premium]

Friday September 18, 2020 12:21 pm PDT by
Apple in iOS 14 added Picture in Picture to the iPhone, a feature designed to let you watch a video in a small screen on your device while you continue to do other things on the phone. When Picture in Picture was working with YouTube The YouTube app doesn't support Picture in Picture, but up until yesterday there was a functional workaround that allowed videos from YouTube.com to be watched...

Hands-On With the New Apple Watch Series 6 and Apple Watch SE

Friday September 18, 2020 1:19 pm PDT by
Today's the official launch date for the Apple Watch Series 6 and the Apple Watch SE, both of which Apple announced on Tuesday. We picked up a couple of the new models and thought we'd give them a quick look for MacRumors readers thinking of ordering a new watch. Apple Watch Series 6 & Apple Watch SE Hands-On! When it comes to design, both the $399 Series 6 and the $279 SE look just like...

Here's How You Can Download iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 Around the World [It's Out]

Wednesday September 16, 2020 2:36 am PDT by
Apple's official public release of iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 dropped on Wednesday, September 16, just a day after the company released the Golden Master to third-party developers. Also set to be made available to the general public for the first time are watchOS 7 and tvOS 14. Getting Started With iOS 14 Video Click image to watch iOS 14 Getting Started While that's left a lot of developers...

Apple Releases iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 With Home Screen Redesign, App Library, Compact UI, Translate App, Scribble Support, App Clips, and More

Wednesday September 16, 2020 12:48 pm PDT by
Apple has released iOS 14 and iPadOS 14, the newest operating system updates designed for the iPhone and iPad. As with all of Apple's software updates, iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 can be downloaded for free. iOS 14 is available on the iPhone 6s and later, while iPadOS 14 is available on the iPad Air 2 and later. The updates are available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To ...

iOS 14.2 Beta Adds New Shazam Music Recognition Feature for Control Center

Thursday September 17, 2020 3:36 pm PDT by
Apple today released the first beta of iOS 14.2 to developers for testing purposes, and the new update introduces a Music Recognition control for the Control Center. The new feature lets you discover music playing around you and it recognizes the music playing with in apps, even when you're wearing AirPods. Songs pop up as notifications, and you can tap to listen in Apple Music....

Apple Updates AirPods 2 and AirPods Pro Firmware to Version 3A283

Monday September 14, 2020 11:24 am PDT by
Apple today released new 3A283 firmware updates for the second-generation AirPods and the AirPods Pro. The second-generation AirPods are being updated from the 2D15 firmware they were previously running, while the AirPods Pros are being updated from the 2D27 firmware they had installed previously. Apple does not provide details on what's included in refreshed firmware so we don't know what's ...

Rumor Report Card: Assessing the Accuracy of Leaks After Apple's Event

Friday September 18, 2020 12:57 pm PDT by
Apple hosted its virtual "Time Flies" event this week, where it introduced four new products, including the Apple Watch Series 6, lower-cost Apple Watch SE, a 10.9-inch iPad Air with an all-screen design, and an updated 10.2-inch iPad with a faster A12 Bionic chip. As expected, there were no new iPhones, which are believed to be coming in October instead. Apple also announced that it will be ...

Epic Games Announces 'Fortnite: Save the World' Will No Longer Be Playable on macOS

Friday September 18, 2020 4:50 am PDT by
Epic Games has announced that "Fortnite: Save the World" will no longer be playable on macOS, after Apple terminated Epic Games' developer account. Fortnite has been in violation of the ‌App Store‌ rules since August 13, when it introduced a direct payment option that skirted Apple's in-app purchase system by allowing payments directly to ‌Epic Games‌. Shortly after Epic blatantly...

Deals: Cellular Carriers Introduce First Offers on Apple Watch Series 6 and SE

Friday September 18, 2020 7:43 am PDT by
With the launch of the Apple Watch Series 6 and Apple Watch SE today, cellular carriers have now introduced special offers for these new wearable devices. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. Starting with AT&T, if you buy one Apple Watch Series 3, Series...