Because Apple is the most well-known smartphone brand, you’re probably reading this on an iPhone or iPad.
There’s also a good chance you came here because of a notification similar to this: “This password was found in a data leak.”
So you’re undoubtedly perplexed by the situation and asking yourself, “What is a data leak on an iPhone?” or “How do I repair leaked passwords?”.
Let’s see what we can discover!
What exactly does a data leak on an iPhone imply?
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The notification means your sensitive information has been publicly exposed online.
Leaks are not the same as data breaches. The former is concerned with hackers launching cyberattacks on business databases in order to steal your information.
The latter is the result of data mishandling by businesses (data scraping, employee leaks) as well as inadvertent user behaviour (clicking risky links, downloading dangerous software).
In a nutshell, both lead to data leakage, despite having distinct root causes. Whichever way you look at it, putting your information out there constitutes a sitting target for criminals.
Why was this warning sent to you?
Your iCloud Keychain notifies you if your password has been leaked in a data breach, and your accounts are vulnerable to misuse (iCloud Keychain is a technology for Apple devices that securely keeps your login credentials and automatically fills them in on a website or app, using end-to-end encryption.).
The following warning appears because Apple has incorporated a security function called password monitoring into the iCloud Keychain. It checks your saved passwords against a list of hacked passwords on an ongoing basis.
Your stolen passwords and access to your online accounts may have been compromised, as the alert indicates.
They can then use your account information to their advantage. For example, by committing crimes in your name (spending your money, impersonating you), or selling your data on the dark web.
How do you check for breached accounts on an iPhone or iPad?
Easily. All you have to do is:
- Go to Settings.
- Tap the Passwords option.
- Go to Security Recommendations.
- Turn on Detect Compromised Passwords.
That’s all there is to it! You may now see your hacked accounts on the Security Recommendations page.
There are two categories: High Priority and Other Recommendations. High Priority includes hacked passwords, while Other Recommendations contain duplicate and weak passwords that might be improved.
What steps do you take to change all of the passwords that have been stolen?
Follow these procedures to update a stolen account on your iPhone:
- Go to the Settings app then choose Passwords.
- Go to Security Recommendations.
- Pick the account you’d like to change.
- Tap Change Password on the account settings screen.
Naturally, you must change a stolen password as soon as possible. iOS devices will also propose generating a strong password for you, so take advantage of it. A password like that will be difficult for criminals to break.
Also, if you wish to improve your password game, you may use a password manager instead. It’s a handy tool that generates strong passwords and only requires you to remember the master password.
Alternatively, you can consider using a VPN for mobile. When you use a VPN, your IP address is hidden so that your personal information stays confidential. With VPNs like Surfshark, you can browse the internet securely and without fear of being tracked. Read Surfshark VPN reviews to learn about how it’s benefited thousands of people.