Earlier this year, a thief could acquire a stolen iPhone and continue receiving iMessages on the device without the original owner’s knowledge. It didn’t matter if the rightful owner of the iPhone disabled the SIM card or changed their Apple ID credentials, as iMessage is a free messaging service that can be used by connecting to a Wi-Fi network.
Fortunately, Matthew Panzarino for The Next Web reports that, according to a source with knowledge on the matter, Apple has since resolved this iMessage bug by placing a variety of checks on the messaging service. Most importantly, the stolen iPhone will require a password to be reentered once the original owner changes their Apple ID credentials. Panzarino details two other methods:
In addition, placing your SIM in a new phone with the same number associated or wiping your phone with Find My iPhone will now disable your stolen device from receiving iMessages. Both of those were common fixes that appeared not to work for many customers under iOS 5.
While this security issue dates back to the beginning of this year, it’s now undeniable that a problem did exist and that, thankfully, Apple has resolved the situation. If you’re a frequent user of iMessage and are not yet running the iOS 6 software update, which was released back in September, it is recommended that you update your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch if it’s compatible for the upgrade.