As I patiently wait for my iPad to ship (any day now), I continue to gather information on the web with ideas for when I do get the new tablet. Today the New York Times has an article about four ways to secure an iPad. The article points out that much of your personal information is stored on the device, and because it is intended be carried around, it is prone to be lost or stolen.
Fortunately, Apple has built in some security features to help protect your data, such as a four digit PIN that you have to enter when you turn the iPad on. You can configure the iPad so that it only prompts for the pin after a certain amount of time has passed, that way if you frequently turn the iPad on and off you don’t have to keep entering the pin. The pin feature also includes a setting so that if someone enters the pin wrong a set number of times all of the data on the device is removed.
If you are afraid of losing your iPad, Apple’s MobileMe service has a feature to help find lost devices. With the service you can remotely set the passcode and lock the device. You can then write a message to display on the screen to provide your contact information. Finally, if you do not hear from anyone, you have the ability to remotely remove all of the data that is on the iPad.
Unfortunately, MobileMe has a pretty hefty price of $99 per year, though it also includes e-mail, calendar, and contact synchronization between a Mac, iPhone, and iPad, in addition to photo galleries and cloud storage. While the price might prevent you from signing up for MobileMe, the iPads’s passcode feature is free and I think it is a feature worth taking advantage of for peace of mind.