Protecting your iPhone apps with Face ID is a tempting concept. Especially if you value privacy and security, and don’t mind waiting an extra second or taking an extra step in order to keep your data safe.
It is possible to protect your iPhone apps with Face ID, but only to an extent. That is, you can only use Face ID with apps that support it. You can count these apps with your fingers. For every other app, you will have to accept that you cannot secure it with Face ID. At least not without jailbreaking your phone.
Even though WhatsApp for iPhone allows you to lock the app with Face ID, I still wish more apps would allow it. For example, I use Instagram extensively and would like to keep private messaging locked using Face ID. Since there is no native Face ID feature to lock your Instagram, we have the next best option you can count on. Here’s how to lock Instagram with Face ID or pretty much any iOS app.
Applications that originally used FaceID / TouchID
Authentication with FaceID and TouchID is generally used for privacy-centric apps like WhatsApp, Authy, LastPass, Edison Email and other banking apps. Native integration makes it easy to access apps privately. However, this is not the only way to secure your apps with a password, I recently found a workaround that allows you to put a password on any app with Screen Time.
How to lock Instagram with FaceID?
To lock Instagram or any other app with Face ID, we’ll use a shortcut created by user @burrito. It works like other app lock apps that you see on Android devices but it works without any tricks. However, there is one drawback. When you open the app after activating FaceID lock, it takes 1-2 seconds before the lock screen appears. As it is powered by Siri Shortcut, it is not as smooth as the original lock on WhatsApp but it still works.
Set up FaceID for Instagram
First you have to go ahead and install the two shortcuts on your iPhone using the AppDefense and AuthKit link. These two shortcuts work together to provide the full functionality of FaceID for any app. To simplify the setup process, install AuthKit first.
The shortcut will guide you to set up Face ID for the first time. Follow the steps below to configure the shortcut on your iPhone.
The shortcut will ask you to select the app you want to set FaceID authentication on. For this article, I’ll go with Instagram. But, this workaround should work for any iOS app you have installed on your iPhone. The process is exactly the same.
After selecting Instagram, tap Continue and go to the next screen. Now, type in the name of the app”InstagramSo as not to get confused when assigning this shortcut to multiple apps.
Now, one shortcut is done and we will proceed to configure the next one. In the Shortcuts app, tap on the newly installed “AppDefense” shortcut. Which will prompt you to set up AuthKit, click OK to follow.
Here you will be asked to set a numeric passcode which will come in handy when you cannot authenticate with FaceID. Choose a password of your choice and enable FaceID. However, if your iPhone has TouchID, the shortcut will automatically detect it and prompt you to enable TouchID instead.
You can decide if you want the shortcut to display a notification and play a ringtone on each successful authentication like you get in the App Store. You can choose to skip it.
Now you are almost done and you just need to set a launcher for the shortcut to run every time the Instagram app is opened. In the Shortcuts app, tap the tab Automation at the bottom and create a new automation by clicking on plus sign (+) in the upper right corner. Click Create personal automation to follow.
Locate Open the app Under Settings and choose Instagram from the list of applications. This will be your launcher and whenever you open the Instagram app, the shortcut will launch.
click on the button Add action on the page and search for Run Shortcut.
Now click on the inactive shortcut button next to Run and add “AppDefense.
The automation is ready, click “the followingTo continue to the next page, press the toggle switch next toQuestion Before Play“You have to disable it.
This will allow the automation to run smoothly without your active participation every time. Click It was completed to finish.
That’s all you need to do to make this business a success. Now every time you open the Instagram app, you will see a white screen. Your identity will be authenticated using FaceID. The shortcut is still a workaround and it doesn’t look as good as the original integration but it works just fine. However, the automation takes 1 second to run after you tap on the Instagram app, so you may still be able to see the home screen of the Instagram app. However, this will not allow you to open the app until you authenticate with your face or passcode. What’s your opinion? Let me know in the comments below.