iPhone 4S Flaw?

To disable Siri unless the device is unlocked, you turn Siri "Off" in the Passcode Lock settings.

Recently Macworld reported a flaw in the new iPhone 4S. A new feature called Siri is a voice-activated feature that allows users to make all sorts of voice commands. But, with the default setting on, Siri is accessible even while the phone is locked. This will allow anyone to send e-mails and text messages, and make calls without entering a passcode. Without entering a passcode, users have limited access. For example, calls and texts can’t be made to people that are not in the contact list. Although there is limited access, unwanted users could still perform unwanted actions.

Turning off the default setting would be the simple solution to this problem, but I don’t see why Apple would allow such access while the phone is locked. It somewhat defeats the purpose of locking the device despite the fact that there is limited access. It may be a convenience to not have to unlock the device to access certain things but is it worth it? It’s pretty much up to the user to have convenience over security.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1009_3-20122632-83/bad-siri-shell-let-anyone-use-a-locked-iphone-4s/?tag=txt

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5 thoughts on “iPhone 4S Flaw?

  1. true its a big flaw, its problem that is potentially very dangerous in the wrong hands. Is Apple taking steps to take care of this problem.

  2. I don’t know if I would call this a flaw, because it’s pretty clear that they consciously decided to make it an option, and I don’t think they’re really at fault for it. The option is even clearly labeled so you know exactly what you’ve turned on or off. You could argue that this is the same vulnerability that people choose to have when they don’t lock their phones, because either way people could send e-mails, text messages and make calls from their phone. In both cases, it’s a user’s choice to leave it enabled or not. I do think that it was a bad choice making it enabled by default however, considering how oblivious some people can be.

    • Ya, this is basically like how Facebook’s privacy settings were pretty lax without the user intervention. You can change it, but it is enabled by default and Apple doesn’t prompt you about it.

  3. To me that is the sad part about today and technology. The reason to be able to use this feature without having to unlock the phone is to make things easier for the user but obviously with today’s threats this is a risk

  4. Another interesting thing about Siri is that it forces proximity sensors on at all times while it is in use, with no way of turning them off. Apple seems to be obsessed with control, and the idea that they know what is best for their users, so it is not at all surprising to see them enabling Siri in this manner.

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