Did you ever lose your Apple ID password and get locked out of your account? If yes, you would be familiar with the pain and frustration of being unable to access iCloud data and service subscriptions. Many of us have faced this terrible situation at some point and wished to have a straightforward yet secure way to access iCloud data.
Thankfully, Apple has addressed this issue by introducing iCloud Data Recovery to revive your iCloud account on iPhone and iPad. So, how does the iCloud Data Recovery service work? Well, it requires you to either set a recovery contact for your Apple ID account or create a recovery key in iOS 15 – iOS 15.4/iPadOS 15 – iPadOS 15.4. This guide explains each iCloud account recovery method so that you can choose the preferred option. That said, let’s get started!
What is an iCloud Recovery Contact? How Does It Help?
For those unaware, an iCloud recovery contact could be anyone you trust, such as a close friend or family member. Following are the requirements you need to keep in mind before adding a person as your trusted contact.
- People you want to add as recovery contacts must be using iOS 15/iPadOS 15 or later. You can’t add someone who is not using an Apple device.
- Your recovery contact must have two-factor authentication (2FA) enabled for their account.
- The person must have a passcode enabled on their device.
- Your recovery contact must be at least 13 years old.
If you ever forget your account password or device passcode, you can reach out to your recovery contact (in person or by phone) to regain access to your locked account.
Can Your Recovery Contact Access Your iCloud Data?
No, they can’t. Your recovery contact won’t be able to access your data. All they can ever do is help recover your data and get your account back.
Add Recovery Contact to Your iCloud Account on iPhone and iPad
Step 1: Launch the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
Step 2: Now, tap on your Apple ID profile at the top.
Step 3: Next, choose Password & Security.
Step 4: Select Account Recovery.
Step 5: Next, tap on the Add Recovery Contact option located under the Recovery Assistance section.
Step 6: Now, carefully read the on-screen information and then tap Add Recovery Contact.
Step 7: Select a recovery contact from your address book. Apple allows you to choose multiple iCloud recovery contacts. It’s also worth pointing out that if you are a part of the Family Sharing group, all the eligible contacts will automatically show up on the screen so you can choose the preferred ones easily. If you want to select other contacts, tap Choose Someone Else, search your contacts, and select the desired ones.
Step 8: Tap Next. the iPhone will now let you send selected contacts a message informing them that they are now your recovery contact. You can choose to send the default message or edit it and add personal touch.
Step 9: Tap Send and then hit Done to finish.
How to Use Recovery Contact to Regain Access to iCloud Account
Helping someone regain access to their locked iCloud account is straightforward. As I said above, they need to reach out to you over the phone or in person. After that, you will have to generate a recovery code and share it.
Step 1: To help someone recover their account as a recovery contact yourself, head into the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad, tap on the Apple ID banner, select Password & Security, and then Account Recovery.
Step 2: Now, tap your contact’s name.
Step 3. Tap Get Recovery Code. Once generated, you can share it with your friend or family who got locked out of their account. After the code has been entered, your friend/family member will be able to reset the password and regain access to their iCloud account.
How to Remove Yourself As a Recovery Contact
Don’t want to be someone’s recovery contact? No problem, you can easily opt-out.
Step 1: Navigate to the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad, select your profile at the top of the main menu, choose Password & Security, and tap on Account Recovery.
Step 2: Now, tap the person’s name and hit Remove Contact. Your friend will now receive a message informing them that you are no longer their account recovery contact.
How to Set Up Recovery Key for iCloud Account on iPhone and iPad
Though a Recovery Key is equally reliable for regaining access to a locked iCloud account, you must note a couple of things.
- Once you have set up a recovery key, the only way to reset your password is by using another device signed in with your Apple ID or by entering your recovery key.
- If you ever lose your recovery key and can’t access your iPhone or iPad, Apple won’t be able to help you recover your account.
Step 1: Navigate to the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad, select your profile, tap on Password & Security, and select Account Recovery.
Step 2: Now, tap on Recovery Key.
Step 3: Turn on the toggle next to Recovery Key.
Step 4: Now, a popup will appear asking you to confirm the action. Tap Use Recovery Key to proceed. After that, follow the prompts to create a recovery key for your device and make sure to remember it.
There you have it! That’s how you can use the all-new iCloud account recovery service to regain access to your locked account if ever the need arises. I prefer the recovery contact method. Although the recovery key is also efficient, I wouldn’t recommend it to those who aren’t great at managing secret codes or tend to forget things easily.
What’s your take on the iCloud account recovery system? Do share your thoughts and also let us know your preferred method in the comments section below.