FolderLock is an iOS mod that lets you password-protect some features in iOS, such as folders, Spotlight, multitasking and the phone’s settings. If you ever wished to lock down your phone in order to stop others from changing your settings or accessing your background apps, this might be a good choice.
This mod will soon be available on the BigBoss repository for $1.59, and it indeed does what it promises. After installing the mod, you’ll see an additional item on your System Preferences that lets you set your password and pick which features you’d like to block. You’re able to select one individually or all of them if you wish. The settings will take effect immediately, and now, whenever you attempt to access any of the features you blocked, typing in your password will be required.
This modification has quite a few problems. First, if you decide to lock the Settings app and forget your password, there’s no clear way to get it back, which might mean you’ll have to either uninstall the tweak or maybe even restore your phone. In addition, only Spotlight results are locked, not the feature itself. That means all results will still be listed, and while not accessible through Spotlight, someone ill-intentioned might simply try to access the result using the phone’s specific function for that result (for example, the SMS App).
FolderLock was created by Andrea Oliva, a modder who authored DeleteMail, a tweak that allows users to delete their whole inbox, instead of having to select all items. DeleteMail is available on the BigBoss repository for $0.99, if you’re interested.
This tweak requires you to jailbreak your phone first, since, just like any OS modifications, it’s not approved by Apple. It’s recommended that you have basic skills on how to restore your device, in case something goes wrong. You can follow our step by step guide to jailbreak your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch on iOS 4.3.1 with Redsn0w, PwnageTool 4.3 (untethered | tethered) on Mac, or with Sn0wbreeze on Windows, or on iOS 4.3.2 with Redsn0w, PwnageTool 4.3 (tethered), or with Sn0wbreeze on Windows, or on iOS 4.3.3 using Redsn0w, PwnageTool and Sn0wbreeze.
Despite the problems, FolderLock works as advertised. That said, you shouldn’t see at as a security feature as much as a fun project to examine the system’s inner-workings. Whether that’s worth $1.59, that’s up to you.