Safely Lend your Phone to Someone You Don’t Trust

Let’s consider some of these situations–

#1 A stranger wants to borrow your phone to make an emergency call. Now at this point, you don’t trust that guy but it would also be rude not to lend him your phone. What if, he speaking the truth?

But then again, he could also be a scammer, trying to hack your online account. Usually, an OTP is sent to a registered mobile no. And maybe he just trying to get that code/link with some social engineering.

#2 You gave your phone to one of your colleague, showing him the pictures your recent vacation. But the moment you look away, he started exploring your private WhatsApp or Facebook messages.

#3 Or let’s just say, you want to lend your phone to a toddler, but you don’t want them to accidentally press a button and make a call.


So basically, we want to restrict the user to a single app. That’s if he/she is using the YouTube app, then they should stay inside the YouTube app. No matter what button they press, they can not go to home screen, see notifications, or access any other apps.

And guess what, this can be easily be done on your Android and iOS devices. You don’t even have to install a third-party app and it takes less than a second to activate it.

So let’s see how to do that.

Android

Yes, you can also use the guest mode on Android. But then some custom ROMs don’t have this option, plus you don’t have access to every feature; like you cannot show them your photos album in guest mode.

So a better alternative is to use built-in screen pinning feature. But you need to activate it first. To do that, go to your Settings > Security > Screen Pinning > ON.

screen-pinning-in--Android-

Once the screen pinning is enabled, you can pin any app you want. Simply open that app, press the overview button. Here you’ll notice a new blue pin icon, tap on it and then confirm the changes. If you want, you can also set a security code.

screen-pin

Now no matter, where you press on the screen or the button you click, you can not leave the current app. But in case you want to deactivate it, then press and hold the recent button and back button simultaneously and enter the security pin.

Sadly, this ‘screen pinning’ feature is only available on Android Lollipop or about, but if you are running KitKat then you can use Touch Lock – Kids Phone.

iOS

This ‘screen pinning’ feature is known as guided access on iOS ecosystem. To enable it, go to your Settings > General > Accessibility > Guided Access > ON.

enable-guided-access-in-ipad

Now open whatever app you want to pin on the screen and triple-press the Home button. You can choose a specific area of the screen you’d like to disable (useful to block bottom ads), or don’t select anything and tap on start.

Guide-access-in-action-in-iOS

And that’s, now no matter what you press or click, you can not exit the app. This will also block notifications. To exit the guided access, triple press the home button again, and tap on disable. You’ll have to enter your iPad/iPhone unlock pin to get out it.

About Mrinal Saha

Mrinal is a tech geek who spends half of his day reading and writing about tech. While the nights are spent on shooting or editing YouTube videos. Feel free to geek out with him on-