Even though WhatsApp for iPhone lets you lock app with Face ID, I still wish more apps would allow it. For instance, I use Instagram extensively and would like to keep the DMs locked with FaceID. As there is no native FaceID to lock your Instagram, we have the next best thing. Let’s lock Instagram using FaceID or pretty much any iOS app.
Apps that implement FaceID/ TouchID natively
FaceID and TouchID are generally reserved for apps revolving around privacy such as WhatsApp, Authy, LastPass, Edison Email, and other Banking apps. The native integration makes it convenient to access the apps privately. However, that is not the only way to secure your apps with a password, I recently found a workaround that lets you put a password on any app using Screen Time.
How to Lock Instagram with FaceID?
To lock Instagram or any other app with FaceID, we’re going to use a Shortcut created by user @burrito. It works like other app locking apps that you see on Android devices but it works without any gimmicks. However, there is one shortcoming. When you open the app after activating the FaceID lock, it takes one to two seconds before showing a lock screen. As it is run with Siri Shortcut, it is not as seamless as Native lock on WhatsApp but it still functions.
Setup FaceID for Instagram
Proceed by installing the two shortcuts on your iPhone using the link AppDefense and AuthKit. These two shortcuts work together to provide the full functionality of FaceID to any app. To make the setup process simpler, install AppDefense first.
The shortcut would guide you to set up FaceID for the first time. Follow the steps below to configure the shortcut on your iPhone.
It would ask you to select an app on which you’d set FaceID authentication. Tap Choose to bring up the list of apps and for this article, I’d go with Instagram. But, this workaround should work with any iOS app you have installed on your iPhone. The process is the same.
After selecting Instagram, tap Continue and move to the next screen. Now, type in the app name ‘Instagram’ so that when you set this shortcut for multiple apps, it won’t get confused.
Now, one shortcut is done and we’d proceed to configure the next. In the Shortcuts app, tap the newly installed shortcut “AppDefense”. It would prompt you to set up AuthKit, tap OK to continue.
Here it would ask you to set a numeric passcode which would come in handy when you can’t authenticate using FaceID. Choose a password of your choice and enable the FaceID. However, if your iPhone has TouchID, it would automatically detect that and prompt you to enable TouchID instead.
You can decide if you want the shortcut to show a notification and play a chime on every successful authentication as you get in the App Store. You can choose to skip it.
Now we’re almost done and we just need to set a trigger for the shortcut to run every time we open the Instagram app. In the Shortcuts app, tap the Automation tab on the bottom and create new automation by tapping the + button on the top right corner. Tap Create Personal Automation to proceed.
Select Open App under Settings and choose Instagram from the list of apps. This would be our trigger and whenever you open the Instagram app, it would run the shortcut.
Tap Add Action button on the page and search for Run Shortcut.
Now tap the greyed out shortcut button next to Run and add “AppDefense”.
The automation is ready, tap Next to proceed to the next page and tap the switch next to “Ask Before Running” and turn it off.
This would allow the automation to run seamlessly without your active participation every time. Tap Done to finish.
That’s all you need to do to make this work. Now every time you open the Instagram app, it would show you a white splash screen. It would authenticate your identity using FaceID. The shortcut is still a workaround and doesn’t look as good as native integration but functions fully well. However, the automation takes one second to run after you tap the Instagram app so you would still be able to see the Home screen of the Instagram app. But it would not let you open the app until you authenticate with your Face or with the passcode. What do you think? Let me know in the comments below.