Day four of iPad mania and here it is. You load up your new iPad, which you only got a few days ago and guess what…where’s your files? Your contacts? Your schedule? You’ve fallen victim to the first iPad virus!
Last night, we received an unconfirmed report from a user who appears to have the first iPad virus. From what we know, this has actually been an iPhone virus infecting an iPad device and the virus has not been developed purposely to hit the iPad. We are investigating this ourselves now and will report further on this when we have more details.
iPad’s iPhone OS
How is this possible anyway? An iPhone virus on the iPad? Well, the iPad actually runs the iPhone’s OS. This gives the iPad the capability to run the thousands of applications that have already been written for the iPhone but it also endangers it into giving virus writers an even bigger platform to write for; as most iPhone viruses will work on the iPad too, and vice versa.
Below are some tips on how to prepare and avoid viruses on your iPad and how to remove a virus if you have it.
How to prepare and avoid getting a virus on your iPad?
Preparation is key as with viruses on all computer platforms. Follow these steps to make sure you do not get a virus and are prepared if you do get one:
1. Regularly back up your data through the iTunes synchronization feature. It can automatically store your contacts, schedule, tasks and other data.
2. Install Apple’s regular firmware updates to your iPad. These updates are essential as they patch holes in the security of the iPhone OS. Again this means syncing your iPad up with iTunes often.
3. Be careful which apps you install. Only install applications you trust and do not install apps or open files from outside the iTunes App Store.
What to do if you have a virus on your iPad?
1. Make sure you have the latest version of iTunes by going to the Apple website and downloading the installation file.
2. Connect your iPad to your computer and open up iTunes.
3. Select your iPad when it appears in iTunes under devices
4. Click on the Summary tab
5. Choose the Restore option
6. iTunes will now ask you if you want to back up your device before restoring it. If you have already backed up your device previously, choose ‘Don’t Back Up‘ otherwise press ‘Back Up‘.
7. In the next windows press the ‘Restore‘ button.
8. Your iPad will now restore itself to factory defaults. After it has completed it will show the Apple logo and start up.
9. After the iPad has booted up it will display a ‘Connect to iTunes’ dialog. This will disappear after it is connected again.
10. From iTunes, a dialog will show to ‘Set Up Your iPad’. Choose to restore the backup (pick the backup file you want) and press ‘Continue‘
11. You now hopefully have a working iPad again with your old data restored. Congratulations and stay safe next time!