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Anyone can permanently brick your iDevice: Here's how to protect yourself

Anyone can permanently brick your iDevice: Here's how to protect yourself
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You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

As an ex-Android user and proud iOS user currently, I can say with pride that Apple’s operating system is far less prone to bugs and hangs and goofups which can destroy the normal discourse of usage. However, in the rare coassion that a glitch or a bug hits the iOS platform, it can catch up pretty fast and make news.

Recently, there’s an infamous bug plaguing all 64 bit iDevices. 

Devices infected

  • iPhone 5S
  • iPhone 6
  • iPhone 6S
  • iPhone 6 Plus
  • iPhone 6S Plus
  • 6th generation iPod Touch
  • iPad Air
  • iPad Air 2
  • iPad Mini 2
  • iPad Mini 3
  • iPad Mini 4
  • iPad Pro

It doesn’t matter which iOS you’re running your device on if you’re using any of these devices.

How the bug works

The bug works relatively simply: if a user goes to settings- General – Date & Time and changes the date to January 1, 1970 (first set the year to 2000, then go back to Settings, then go to Date & Time again and set year to 1970). This will cause your device to instantly enter into a restart loop, stuck on the Apple logo loading. (Do NOT even try doing it)
You cannot restart, reinstall your iOS or placed into the emergency DFU mode and fix it.

Why is this happening

There are several theories behind why this is happening, including the UNIX system on which iOS is designed in a way that makes 1st January 1970 the “birth year”, and changing your date to this causes the internal clock to be reset become less than zero. Although there is a long technical explanation of the same, the shorter version is don’t put your device to this date!

How to fix

You can go to the Apple Store and get it fixed, but at a cost and wasting your expenses. A shorter but riskier solution is pulling the battery and reinstalling it. This will reset the iDevice’s internal clock. Of course, you’d still have to go to an unauthorized shop to do so (not recommended), but it’s still good to know the option to fix it exists.

Apple has promised to fix this in its OS update soon. Till then, be sure your friends don’t disable your device in a few seconds, and be sure who you hand over your phone to!

What do you think of this shockingly simple to execute bug? Would you be more cautious to hand your device to your friends? Let us know in the comments on our official Facebook page, Entrepreneur India 

Edition: December 2016

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