Everyone seems to love Siri, the friendly personal assistant built into the latest Apple iPhone 4S. People might not love her as much if they knew that she can leave your phone vulnerable. Security company Sophos has uncovered a security hole around Siri that allows people to use your phone even if you have a screen lock.
If you don’t know what Siri is yet, here is a quick crash course in everything you need to know. In the iPhone 4S default settings Siri is configured to function even if the screen is locked. This means that if you need to make a quick call to your friend, or shoot off a text message that you will be late to a meeting you don’t have to waste time unlocking your screen to do those simple tasks. The problem comes when an owner has a lock screen they can still access Siri, and her wealth of knowledge.
From a locked iPhone 4S anyone can access Siri and ask her anything you want, and she might even surprise you with some funny responses. You can also send emails and text messages from a locked iPhone 4S. You will need to know the name of the contact you are trying to message, but you are able to communicate through a locked phone. You are not able to launch any apps, or get information about contacts while the phone is locked.
The cause of this security hole is due to the default setting allowing Siri to work even with the protected lock screen up. To change this setting you simply have to go to setting, general, and then Passcode lock on your iPhone 4S. Once there you want to make sure Siri is turned off.
It is a little surprising to see that Apple even has the option to have Siri function when a password protected lock screen is up, let alone make that the default option on every phone sold. If you are an iPhone 4S owner make sure you change this setting in your phone, and if you know someone who owns an iPhone 4S now is your chance to send out funny emails on their behalf.