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Privacy in iOS 13: Everything you need to know!

Apple unveiled iOS 13 at the WWDC 2019 keynote, which comes with a lot of performance improvements and new features. One of their bigger points was Privacy and Security on iOS 13, and here's all the details on Apple's serious stance on user privacy.

Sign in with Apple

With the new "Sign in with Apple" feature, you are able to sign in to websites and apps with just your Apple ID. There will no longer be a need to fill out forms or create more passwords.

Sign in with Apple just requires Face ID or Touch ID to work for confirmation, and then you're all set. Apps and websites will only be able to ask for your name and email address. However, Apple can also generate a random email address for you if you don't even want to give out your email, and all messages that are sent to that unique email are forwarded directly to your Apple ID email.

Apple can even generate an email address on a per-app basis, meaning that if you don't want to hear from a particular app anymore, you can just block email sent to that address.

Apple will not track any of your activity and won't have any access to your data.

"Just Once" location sharing

Apps always seem to be asking for permission to use your location, for whatever reason. It's an annoyance, and we always wonder why they need that info, or what they're doing with it. And it's always "Only while using the app" or "Always." Or you can just say "Never," but then some apps won't work. But not anymore.

Now you can give an app permission to access your location just once. But if you choose to give an app or website more than that, Apple offers more protections than before. You'll be able to get reports of when an app has used your location, and for what purpose.

HomeKit Secure Video

iOS 13 HomeKit Secure Video

The footage on home security cameras contains highly sensitive and personal data. With HomeKit Secure Video, all of your security camera footage gets end-to-end encryption before it's stored securely in iCloud. Only you and the people you invite into your Home app are able to view these videos.

This service is free with existing iCloud accounts and does not count against your iCloud storage plan. Apple has confirmed that Logitech will be using this feature, with more brands to come in the future.

There will also be router support in HomeKit, allowing you to "firewall off" accessories from a network. Linksys, Eero, and Spectrum are brands that have been confirmed for this, with more to come.

Questions?

Apple believes that privacy is a fundamental human right, and they take it very seriously. We're glad to see Apple implementing even more measures to protect our data in iOS 13.

If you have any questions regarding the new privacy and security features in iOS 13, drop them here and we'll do our best to answer.

Christine Chan
Christine Chan

Christine Romero-Chan has been writing about technology, specifically Apple, for over a decade at a variety of websites. She is currently the iMore lead on all things iPhone, and has been using Apple’s smartphone since the original iPhone back in 2007. While her main speciality is the iPhone, she also covers Apple Watch, iPad, and Mac when needed.

When she isn’t writing about Apple, Christine can often be found at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, as she is a passholder and obsessed with all things Disney, especially Star Wars. Christine also enjoys coffee, food, photography, mechanical keyboards, and spending as much time with her new daughter as possible.

8 Comments
  • Really loving the focus on security and privacy in this update. Question is, how long before we can authenticate via Apple on Mobile Nations? 🤔️
  • I think the "Sign In with Apple" feature is really great to offer like that to their privacy sensitive customers. I don't see it as a huge game changer though.. I mean how many services do you really log into with an account in the first place? I checked my Google account and it was like 6 places ... like Open Table. Also, requiring developers to offer Apple sign-in if they offer FB and Google sign-in is a bit heavy handed. Though, I appreciate that the sign-in function will be cross platform. I wasn't aware of this initially, but reading the preview under Works Everywhere, it states "works on your Apple devices as well as the web and apps on Android or Windows" Overall though... was probably one of the more interesting announcements this year.
  • I use "Sign in with..." in loads of places, pretty much any place that offers it, as it means my password isn't kept on the server of someone I don't trust, plus it makes signing in a lot easier
  • How many is "loads"? If you do that with Google, you can see the specific number. I will speculate that it's less than 10. ...and why would you sign-in with your account to a site that you don't trust in the first place? That seems kinda conflicting.
  • Just checked, I've got 22, so your speculation was wrong, but I've also sometimes used Twitter, and on some gaming sites I've used Steam, which takes it to over 30. When I say trust I mean security wise, there's plenty of great sites but they don't have the security infrastructure Google has. It's not necessarily that I don't trust them, my information is just much more secure with Google
  • Lol! Over 30!?!? Fair enough then... I guess it's a more popular Sign In method for some people. I think I've only used it when I didn't feel like going through the full process. I get your point about the infrastructure, too... You may trust a vendor, but their tech build out might be lacking.. Case in point, Quest Diagnostics here in the states had a breach reported this week exposing incredibly sensitive personal information. The trust with Quest is deserved, but their tech infrastructure allowed for sensitive personal information to be exposed.
  • So... another way to lock you into iOS? I'd be willing to bet there isn't an easy way they plan to allow you to transition from iOS to Android for sign ins... Sign In With Google at least allows you to use iOS or Android.
  • "Sign in with Apple" is cross-platform.