Is Apple’s iPhone the most secure phone in the world?

The iPhone is celebrating its tenth anniversary this month, following years of bitter rivalry with its Android counterparts and also years of innovation in terms of security, user-friendly offerings, and artificial intelligence.

While Android rivals have given it a tough fight, the iPhone still stands out as the most secure phone in the world.

It may be far-fetched to say that the iPhone is completely immune from hacking attempts or powerful malware intrusions. On the contrary, there have been several instances where iPhones were found to be lacking. Yet, the pace at which Apple fixes errors, brings in patches, and distributes them to almost every iPhone in no time gives iPhone users an immense advantage over their Android counterparts.

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Today's hackers are quite adept at fishing out flaws in device software and exploiting them to gain root access to devices. Apple's many iPhones as well as the App Store have been subjects of intense scrutiny and invasion attempts by hackers for the better part of the last decade. Yet, news of hackers gaining root access to iPhones or bricking iPhones using ransomware have been few and far between.

The reason behind this is that Apple uses advanced cryptography to protect iPhones. The company ensures that all kinds of data including photos, messages, videos, and app data are encrypted and stored in a secure vault. The keys to such vaults are securely stored in Secure Enclaves inside iPhones and even Apple can't access such keys even if it wants to.

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What's more, Apple separately encrypts data that are backed up on iTunes to prevent hackers from gaining access to data by exploiting cloud vulnerabilities. To keep users safe from malicious adware, Apple lets users tap on Reset Advertising Identifier in Settings. At the same time, iPhone users can also deactivate several lock screen functions like notifications, Wallet updates, Siri, Home Control and Reply with Message to keep their data secure from prying eyes.

A number of smartphones like Blackphone and BlackBerry DTEK60 are marketed as the most secure devices in the world. While they certainly field a lot of settings and features to secure user data, the fact that Android as a platform is open source ensurs that there is no security on what goes into the app store and so the chances of a breach are significantly higher.

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Apple has also mandated developers to use the App Transport Security standard when submitting apps to its various stores. The standard only transfers app data via secure HTTPS connections and thereby protects user data from getting breached. While it is turned an by default in Apple's development tools, Google allows developers to inject HTTPS exceptions into their apps, thereby endangering data transferred by apps that are downloaded from the Google Play Store.

With the iPhone completing ten years at the top while continuing to serve as one of the most secure devices around, this bodes well for its future and also speaks well of how Apple's engineers and developers have protected the iOS platform in the face of many malicious attempts on its integrity.