Apple went big on privacy during its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) keynote this, showcasing features from on-device Siri audio processing to a new privacy dashboard for iOS that makes it easier than ever to see which apps are collecting your data and when.
While typically vocal aboutduring its WWDC developer sessions. We’ve rounded up some of the most interesting — and necessary.
Passwordless login with iCloud Keychain
Apple is the latestto take steps to ditch the password. During its “Move beyond passwords” developer session, it previewed Passkeys in iCloud Keychain, a method of passwordless authentication powered by WebAuthn, and Face ID and Touch ID.
The feature will ultimately be available in iOS 15 and macOS Monterey, so you no longer have to set a password when creating an account, website, or app. Instead, you’ll pick a username and then use Face ID or Touch ID to you. The passkey is then stored in your Keychain and synced across your using iCloud — so you don’t have to remember it or carry around a hardware authenticator key.
“Because it’s just a single tap to sign in, it’s simultaneously easier, faster, and more secure than almost all common forms of authentication today,” said Garrett Davidson, an experienced Apple authentication engineer. While it’s unlikely to be available on your iPhone or Mac any time soon — Apple says the feature is still in its ‘early stages, and it’s currently disabled by default — the move is another sign of the growing momentum behind eliminating passwords, which are prone to be forgotten, reused across multiple services, and — ultimately — phishing attacks. to make Windows 10 password-free, and Google recently confirmed that it’s working towards “creating a future where one day you won’t need a password at all”.
Microphone indicator in macOS
Since the introduction of iOS 14,have been able to keep an eye on which apps are accessing their microphones via a green or orange dot in the status bar. Now it’s coming to the desktop too.
In macOS Monterey,are accessing their Mac’s microphone in Control Center, MacRumors reports, which will complement the existing hardware-based green light next to Mac’s webcam when the camera is in use.
iOS 15, which will include many privacy-bolstering tools from Mail Privacy Protection to App Privacy Reports, is also getting a certain Paste feature that will help shield your clipboard data from other apps.
This feature will enable users to paste content from one app to another without the second app being able to access the information on the clipboard until you paste it. This is a significant improvement over iOS 14, which would notify when an app took data from the clipboard but did nothing to prevent it from happening.
“With secure paste, developers can let users paste from a different app without having access to what was copied until the user takes action to paste it into their app,” Apple explains. “When developers use secure paste, users can paste without being alerted via the [clipboard] transparency notification, helping give them peace of mind.”
While this feature sounds somewhat insignificant, it’s being introduced following a significant privacy issue that came to light. In March 2020, revealed that dozens of popular iOS apps — including TikTok — were “snooping” on users’ clipboards without their consent, potentially accessing sensitive data.
Advanced Fraud Protection for Apple Card
Payments fraud is more prevalent than ever due to the pandemic, and Apple is looking to do something about it. As reported by 9to5Mac, the company has previewed Advanced Fraud Protection, a feature that will let Apple Card users generate new card numbers in the.
While details remain thin — the feature isn’t life in the first iOS 15 developer beta — Apple’s explanation suggests that Advanced Fraud Protection will make it possible to generate new— the three-digit number you enter at checkout – when making online purchases.
“With Advanced Fraud Protection, Apple Card users can have a We’ve asked Apple for some more information.that changes regularly to make online Card Number transactions even more secure,” the brief explainer reads.
‘Unlock with Apple Watch’ for Siri requests.
As a result of the widespread mask-wearing necessitated by the pandemic, Apple introduced an ‘Unlock with Apple Watch’ in iOS 14.5 that enabled users to unlock their iPhones and authenticate Apple Pay payments using an Apple Watch instead of Face ID.
The scope of this feature is expanding with iOS 15, as the company has confirmed that users will soon be able to use this alternative authentication method for Siri requests, such as adjusting phone settings or reading messages. Currently, users must enter a PIN, password, or Face ID to do so.
“Use the secure connection to yourwhen an obstruction, like a mask, prevents Face ID from recognizing your Face,” Apple explains. Your watch must be passcode protected, unlocked, and on your wrist close by.”
Standalone security patches
To ensure iPhone users who don’t want to upgrade to iOS 15 immediately are up to date with When iOS 15 lands later this , users will be given the option to update to the latest version of iOS or to stick with iOS 14 and install the latest security fixes., Apple will start decoupling patches from feature updates.
“iOS now offers a choice between two software update versions in the Settings app,” Apple explains (via MacRumors). “You can update to the latest iOS 15 as soon as it’s released for the latest updates. Or continue on iOS 14 and get important security updates until you’re ready to upgrade to the next major version.” This feature sees , which has long rolled out monthly security patches to Android users.
‘Erase all contents and settings’ for Mac.
Apple has been bringing the “erase all contents and settings” option on iPhones and iPads to macOS Monterey for years. Wiping a Mac has been an uphill task requiring you to erase your device and reinstall macOS. Thankfully, that’s going to change For years.
system is instantly and securely ‘erased’ by destroying the encryption keys.”system currently installed,” Apple says. The option will let you factory reset your MacBook with just a click. “Because storage is always encrypted on Mac systems with Apple Silicon or the T2 chip, the