The latest version of our iPhone operating system, iOS 17, has brought a series of new features focused on privacy and security. Among them is the ability to require password authentication to access Private Browsing tabs in Safari. This feature enhances privacy, but if we prefer more direct access, we may want to disable it.
Password or no password, that is the question
Private Browsing is a feature that allows us to search and browse the internet without leaving a trace in the device’s browsing history, cookies, or cache. With the arrival of iOS 17, if we have private tabs open and exit the application, Safari will now prompt us for authentication via Face ID/Touch ID or our passcode to access them again.
This means that even if someone is using our unlocked iPhone or iPad, they wouldn’t be able to see our private tabs without knowing the passcode. However, if we don’t typically hand our unlocked device to others or find the authentication request too frequent, we can easily disable this feature. Here’s how:
- Open the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
- Scroll down and tap on Safari.
- In the “Privacy & Security” section, turn off “Require Face ID to Unlock Private Browsing.”
Once these steps are completed, Private Browsing tabs will no longer require Face ID/Touch ID verification or the entry of the passcode.
Private browsing is not synonymous with hiding something. We can use it, for example, to have multiple different sessions open on the same website, or because we have configured a different search engine for that type of browsing. Keeping this in mind and considering all the new features that come to Safari with iOS 17, being able to treat this browsing mode with the same simplicity as the regular mode is also valuable. Fortunately, with a simple adjustment, we can decide according to our preferences.