The Passcode Lock On Your iPad 2 Is Useless If You Use a Smart Cover

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A Colorado man believes Apple's Smart Cover infringes his patent for a portable computer case.
A Colorado man believes Apple's Smart Cover infringes his patent for a portable computer case.

I’ve got a passcode lock on my iPad 2 so that it cannot be accessed by individuals who weren’t given permission to play with it. However, I also use an Apple Smart Cover, and thanks to a security flaw in the iPad’s iOS software, my passcode lock is now useless, because anyone can use my Smart Cover to gain entry to my iPad.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NLgQ22naQhE

As you can see from the video above, courtesy of 9to5Mac’s Mark Gurman, you can easily gain entry to an iPad 2 with a passcode lock by using its Smart Cover. If you can’t see the video, here’s how the trick can be done:

  • While on the lock screen, hold down the iPad’s power button until the “slide to power off” switch appears.
  • Now close the iPad’s Smart Cover to lock the device again.
  • Open the Smart Cover and hit the ‘Cancel’ button — you will now be taken to the iPad’s home screen, or the last app that was open before unlocking.

Now, you’ll be pleased to know that if your iPad opens to the home screen, then apps cannot be opened up until it’s unlocked properly using a passcode. However, the biggest issue occurs if you locked your iPad while an app such as Mail, Messages, or Contacts was open, because if it unlocks to an open app, it can be used as normal — as shown in the video.

If you’re concerned about this, there is a temporary solution: Go into the Settings app on your iPad and disable the option that allows your Smart Cover to wake your iPad from sleep. You’ll no longer be able to open/close the cover to sleep/wake the device, but no one can gain entry to the device without authorization.

Hopefully Apple will issue a fix for this in an iOS update soon. Are you concerned about this flaw?