iOS 13 Bug Lets Kids Get Around New Parental Controls

Posted on December 13, 2019 by Mehedi Hassan in Apple, iOS with 8 Comments

On Wednesday, we reported about the release of iOS 13.3. The new iOS 13 update was released on Tuesday to fix issues with some previous updates, and it also introduced a new feature called Communication Limits for Screen Time.

The new feature is designed to let parents control who their children can communicate on their phone. But as CNBC reports, the new feature is severely flawed.

When a parent sets up Communication Limits on their kid’s phone, they are only allowed to communicate with contacts in their address book. And they aren’t supposed to be able to add new contacts to their address book without a pin from their parent.

Well, as it turns out, Communication Limits has a bug that lets users bypass that. When a kid receives a message from an unknown contact, iOS lets them know that it’s from a restricted contact, but it also shows them an option to add the contact to their address book, which it isn’t supposed to do without the parent’s pin.

The issue only works when contacts aren’t stored on iCloud.

There’s another flaw in the design of the Communication Limits feature whereby users can use Siri on their Apple Watch to text or call any number, bypassing all the Communication Limits.

Apple has acknowledged the issue and is working on a fix, but the company didn’t apologise for the mistake.

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