Apple says that forty-nine states now accept digital proof of auto insurance, two states accept digital driving licenses and 11 other states are working to add capacity in the near future.
This means people can store those official documents on their iPhone and open the Wallet app when someone asks for a license or proof of insurance. But is this a good idea?
Consider this: You are asked to show proof of auto insurance at a traffic stop and you have to hand over your unlocked phone to the officer.
It’s always best to keep a paper copy of that insurance card in your glove compartment or console. But suppose you have not replaced an expired proof of insurance card with a new one. The only proof you will have is on your phone.
Many times we share our phone with someone else. Maybe it’s a friend who wants to turn on a game, a friend who wants to read a book on your Kindle app, or someone asking to send a text.
I don’t want anyone to use my phone, but if it is necessary to hand it over to someone unlocked, there is a way to prevent them from seeing something without permission.
This is a setting you should change if you ever give your phone to someone.
On an iPhone: Open Settings, then Accessibility, and then scroll to the bottom of the screen to turn on “Guided access.” It is off by default.
When you move the slider to the right to turn it on, you will be asked to create a passcode. This is not the passcode you use to unlock the phone. You can set it up as the same or a new passcode (just remember what it is).
When someone needs to look at an app on your phone, before handing it over, open the app they need to use and click the power button on the side three times. You will see a pop-up asking for Guided Access. Tap on it and it will prevent them from opening any other app or navigating away from the app you allow them to use.
To turn off Guided Access, click the side button three times and enter the passcode that you set to unlock the phone.
On an Android device: Go into Settings & Security, and open the “Advanced” option at the bottom of the screen. Turn on “App Pinning” at the very bottom of the screen. On the screen showing all open apps, tap and hold the icon of the app you want to pin. This will pin any open apps making it impossible for anyone to open and close the app or navigate away from the app you’ve pinned. To turn it off, hold down both the Back button and the Home button simultaneously which will open the lock screen where you can re-enter your passcode to unlock the phone.
It may be different on other Android phones so you may have to dig into the security settings a bit to find the app pinning.
Guided Access and App Pinning doesn’t change anything with how you use your phone so you can set it up ahead of time (just make sure you don’t forget the new passcode on the iPhone).