How to Unlock Your iPhone with Security Key


It’s important to note that you don’t want to lose your security key. Apple asks you to set up two to start, so you can keep a backup in a safe place. But if you somehow save both, there’s a chance you’ll be permanently locked out of your account (there may be recovery options, but Apple won’t say what they are, probably for security reasons).

You’ll need to follow this process when signing in to your Apple ID in a new web browser, and there are a few places (at least not yet) where it won’t work. Perhaps most important is iCloud for Windows, so you may want to turn it off if you use your Apple account on Windows devices. And you can’t use Security Keys on Apple devices running older software or with Apple IDs assigned to children.

Setting up security keys

The first step is to buy two security keys, which are around $50 each online. Apple says you need keys certified to work with the FIDO (Instant Identification Online) standard and the right connections for your devices: NFC (iPhones) only, Lightning, USB-C or USB-A. It’s a good idea to use adapter dongles and cables with these security keys, making it easy to find keys that work on everything you use.

With your physical keys in hand and the latest software update installed, you can configure everything from your iPhone or iPad by going to Settings, tapping and selecting your name at the top. Password and security. Choose Add security keys To guide them through the process of associating them with their Apple ID. At the same time, you can review all the devices connected to your Apple ID.

The YubiKey 5C NFC is a security key recommended by Apple.

Photography: Yubico

Make sure you are running the latest software on macOS and then open it. Apple menu and select System settings. Click your name at the top of the navigation pane on the left and then select Password and security And click Add Next to the Security Keys heading. You’ll then be taken through the steps to associate your keys with your account and show you the devices you’re already using with your Apple ID.

As we mentioned earlier, you must add at least two security keys to your account, and you can add up to six. If you want to delete one or more security keys, go to the same screens on iOS, iPadOS or macOS – you’ll see Remove all security keys Optional. If you select this, the two-step verification process will revert to using the passcode method as before.


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