Frequently Asked Questions

Lockdown used to block ads in a popular app I use, what gives?

We do try hard to block ads in popular apps, but marketing and ad companies are always changing hosting and serving of their ads to avoid ad blockers. It is sometimes the case that attempting ad blocking actually ends up blocking the content that Lockdown users actually want to see in their apps, so it is a balancing act. We haven't given up though - it's a work in progress and we are constantly working to improve our blocking. If you have any specific sites or apps in mind, please contact us at team@lockdownprivacy.com

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What do I do if Lockdown stops blocking trackers, it turns itself off, or my device's internet seems to not work?

This is usually caused by either an issue with the device settings, or some conflicting app/software. Here's what to do:

  1. Ensure that Background App Refresh is enabled in Settings for Lockdown. Lockdown needs this in order to refresh itself and stay active. See how to turn this on in Apple's documentation here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202070.
  2. Ensure that Low Battery Mode is set to off. Sometimes iPhones and iPads become overly aggressive in stopping background apps like Lockdown when this mode is enabled. See how to get to this setting in Apple's documentation here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT205234.
  3. Ensure that no other security products or VPNs are interfering with Lockdown. Lockdown is incompatible with many third-party VPNs and/or security products. Here's how to turn those other conflicting apps off:
    1. Open Settings app
    2. Tap VPN
    3. If there are any entries that are NOT "Lockdown VPN" or "Lockdown Configuration", tap the "i" next it
    4. Turn "Connect On Demand" OFF for those entries (again, entries that are NOT Lockdown)
    5. Open Lockdown again, and activate Firewall and Secure Tunnel
  4. Ensure that cellular data is turned ON for Lockdown. If you disable cellular data for Lockdown, it will be unable to process legitimate app requests and apps will appear to have no internet connection, despite your device having a strong cellular connection. Learn more about cellular data and Lockdown in this FAQ.
  5. Ensure that Lockdown is up to date (how to update apps), and then update your iPhone, iPad, or Mac to the latest version available: update iOS or iPadOS, update macOS.

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Does Lockdown impact battery and why does Lockdown show up in my Battery settings panel?

We've performed numerous benchmarks in controlled settings to ensure that Lockdown does not impact a device's battery life. In some cases, Lockdown saves battery, because some apps spend so much energy contacting advertisement and tracking servers. Unfortunately, due to misinformation and issues with iOS, we sometimes get blamed for battery issues, so we'll explain how it all works here:

  1. iOS miscalculates Lockdown's battery usage - Since Lockdown is always running in the background to block requests, iOS thinks that apps (and app trackers) that Lockdown blocks are also part of Lockdown's battery usage. This is not accurate, and we have submitted a bug report to Apple for them to fix this.
  2. iOS updates cause battery drain - Apple has released a few different updates for iOS recently. Every time your iOS is updated (even a minor update), it does what is called a "re-index", which means it optimizes all your content for faster searching. This can cause high battery usage and last several days, and things return to normal a few days after the update. We do usually experience poor battery the first few days of a new iOS version, such as with the recent update to iOS 15.
  3. New iOS versions have battery bugs - Apple often plays it "fast and loose" with major iOS updates (like iOS 14 to iOS 15) because they need to coincide with hardware releases, so the early versions of these major updates sometimes have battery-draining bugs.

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Why does iOS show that Lockdown is using cellular data?

The cellular data that is attributed to Lockdown is actually all your normal internet traffic. Lockdown's Firewall filters the traffic on your device, so that it can block the ads/malware/badware. This means all of your internet traffic goes through the Lockdown Firewall on your device (not to servers). This is why your iPhone reports this as data usage by Lockdown - because it's filtering everything first before it reaches the internet. If you turned off Lockdown you'll see data usage increase in the other apps you use, because it would no longer be going through Lockdown's Firewall filter.

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Why does the App Privacy Report show Lockdown connecting to so many domains?

In the "App Network Activity" section of the App Privacy Report (as of iOS/iPadOS 15.2):

You will see a large number of domains that are attributed to Lockdown. These domains, like "gateway.icloud.com" (shown below): are actually attempted connections (by apps or websites) that Lockdown has blocked.

When you enable Lockdown's Firewall, all of an app's traffic goes through the Firewall on your device. This is why you see a domain being contacted by Lockdown - because all of that traffic goes through Lockdown first, before it reaches the internet. If you turn off Lockdown's Firewall, or whitelist a domain, you'll see those domains contacted by the apps themselves, as that traffic is no longer going through Lockdown's Firewall.

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How do I add a custom domain to Lockdown's Block List?

1. Open Lockdown and click on "Block List" under Firewall:

2. Click on "Custom" to add a new domain to the Block List:

3. Type in the custom domain, and hit "done" on your keyboard:

4. You should now see your custom domain in the list:

5. Click "Save" in the top right corner of your screen to update the list:

6. Wait for the Firewall to restart, and now the new domain you've just added is being blocked!

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Why does Apple Mail fail to load some images with the message: "Your network preferences prevent content from loading privately", and how do I resolve it?

In Apple's Mail app, in both iOS 15+ and macOS 12+, there is a new feature called "Mail Privacy Protection". It appears that this feature conflicts with Lockdown's privacy protections, and we've reported this bug to Apple. Until there is a fix available, you can simply disable this redundant feature - as Lockdown Firewall already blocks trackers, and Lockdown VPN hides your IP address. Here's how to do that:

To disable it on iOS/iPadOS:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap "Mail".
  3. Tap "Privacy Protection".
  4. Disable "Protect Mail Activity".
  5. Disable "Hide IP Address".
  6. You may need to force quit the Mail app for the settings to apply.
To disable it on macOS:
  1. Open the Mail app.
  2. On the menu, click "Mail" at the top left.
  3. Click "Preferences".
  4. Click the "Privacy" tab.
  5. Uncheck all three options.

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I'm having issues logging into an app with Facebook (Messenger, WhatsApp, Instagram, etc.). How do I fix this?

Facebook tries very hard to ensure that you are in their tracking system whether you are using Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp or any other apps they own - as well as other apps that use their login or ad networks. Lockdown blocks these tracking attempts. Here's how to fix issues that you might see with Facebook's apps, or any other apps that use Facebook login or other features:

  1. Open Lockdown, and under Firewall, tap on "Block List".
  2. Try setting both "Facebook & WhatsApp" and "Facebook Trackers" to "not blocked" in the Block List. Be sure to tap "SAVE" at the top right, and let the Firewall re-activate before trying again.
  3. Try to log into the app with Facebook. Once you're logged into the app, you should be able to set 'Facebook Trackers' to "blocked" again. You might need to keep "Facebook & WhatsApp" set to "not blocked", depending upon the app.

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I'm having trouble with a specific app or website. How do I whitelist it so it bypasses Lockdown?

Here's how to whitelist an app or website:

  1. Open Lockdown
  2. Tap "Whitelist"
  3. On iOS, tap the "domain-to-whitelist.com" field. Or if you're on macOS, under "Custom Domains", click the "New Domain" field.
  4. Enter the domain associated with the app or website you'd like to whitelist. For example, "yahoo.com" (without quotation marks) will whitelist the Yahoo website.
  5. On iOS, tap "Done", then "Save". On macOS, click "Add".
  6. Wait for the Firewall to re-activate (it will appear to turn off and back on again). If this doesn't happen, try it again and ensure that you hit "Done" and "Save" (or "Add" on Mac).
  7. The site or app you added now bypasses Lockdown Privacy's Firewall and Secure Tunnel. If you are uncertain what domain is associated with the app you're using, feel free to contact us at team@lockdownprivacy.com and we will help you out!

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Why do I see Facebook being blocked, even though I don't have Facebook installed?

Facebook's trackers are embedded in many (if not most) popular AppStore apps. This gives Facebook information about who you are, and what you do in apps - so that Facebook can serve you advertisements and other targeted content. So even if you don't have Facebook itself installed, their trackers still come bundled with many popular apps. Lockdown blocks these tracking attempts.

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I forgot my password, how do I reset it?

Here's how to reset your password:

  1. Open Lockdown on iPhone or iPad
  2. Tap Account on bottom right
  3. Sign Out
  4. Tap Account on bottom right
  5. Sign In
  6. Forgot Password
  7. Open the Reset Password email on your iPhone or iPad. This could be in your spam box or take some time to arrive.
  8. Reset the password
  9. After successfully resetting your password, you need to sign out on all your other devices that have Lockdown installed, then sign in again, to avoid any issues.

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I typed the wrong email during signup. How do I change it?

Open Lockdown on iPhone or iPad. Tap Account on bottom right, then click "Sign Out", and click "Sign Out" again to confirm. Then tap Account again, and tap "Sign Up" to sign up with the correct email address.

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In VPN settings I have "Lockdown Configuration" and "Lockdown VPN", what do these mean?

The "Lockdown Configuration" on your Mac or iPhone/iPad is what creates the localhost "127.0.0.1" which allows all of your app traffic to pass through Lockdown's block lists first. This is what enables the on-device blocking. The IP address "127.0.0.1" is a special reserved address called localhost that is only accessible on your device (iPhone, iPad, or Mac). "Lockdown VPN", also in network preferences (or VPN Settings), is the Secure Tunnel and this is what enables access to our VPN service, which we call Secure Tunnel, in the Lockdown app.

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I'm not receiving the confirmation email.

  1. Ensure your email is typed correctly. To do this: Open Lockdown, tap Account on bottom right, and ensure that the email address at the top where it says "Signed In As [Your Email Address]" matches your actual email address. If not, then tap "Sign Out" and tap "Sign Out" again to confirm.
  2. We have had reports of people's confirmation emails being marked as spam and have heard from a small number of people that it took extra time (a day or two) for it to arrive in their inbox. If you're using a desktop email client, be sure to check the spam box in your web interface too - sometimes users find that there is a separate spam filter on the online interface.
  3. As a last resort, try signing up again using a different email address. We are finding that for unknown reasons, some email providers are blocking our emails completely. There's nothing we can really do in that case. To do this, open Lockdown, tap Account on the bottom right. Then tap "Sign Out" (at the top), then tap "Sign Out" again to confirm.
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If I subscribe to the Secure Tunnel, can I share this with my family?

Yes! To share the subscription with your family's devices, do the following:

  1. On your own device, subscribe to Secure Tunnel.
  2. On that same device, make sure you're logged into Lockdown with your email, by tapping the "Account" tab at the bottom. The screen should say "Signed In As [Your Email Address]". If it does not say that, then tap "Sign Up" to sign up and confirm your email address.
  3. On that same device, enable Secure Tunnel.
  4. On your family member's device, tap into the "Account" tab, then "Sign In". Sign in using the same Lockdown account (email and password) from step 2.
  5. On your family member's device, tap into the "Protect" tab, and activate Secure Tunnel. It should now work!

If you have any issues with this, please contact us at team@lockdownprivacy.com

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During Mac setup, I'm seeing "NEIKEv2Provider wants to access key "privateKey" in your keychain". What do I do?

That dialog is part of the Lockdown Mac setup process. Enter your system password (the password you use to log into your computer) and click "Always Allow". This allows the setup to finish. You can then click the Lockdown icon on the menu bar (at the top of your Mac's display) to check that Lockdown is activated.

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How do I uninstall Lockdown Mac?

Here's how to completely uninstall Lockdown on your Mac.

  1. Click the Lockdown button in the top right menu bar on your Mac to open the popup (it's a picture of a lock)
  2. Click the menu (three stripes) button
  3. Click Quit. It will ask if you want to deactivate. Click yes.
  4. Click your Wifi icon in the menu bar
  5. Click "Network Preferences"
  6. On the left, select "Lockdown Configuration", then click the "-" minus icon (on the bottom left of this dialog box)
  7. On the left again, select "Lockdown VPN", then click the "-" minus icon again
  8. Click "Apply"
  9. Open your Applications folder
  10. Drag "Lockdown" into the Trash

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What is Confirmed VPN and what does it have to do with Lockdown?

Confirmed VPN powers the Secure Tunnel VPN in Lockdown. It's the VPN service we built before we created Lockdown, and was also crucial for us to create the Openly Operated transparency certification. Lockdown provides both the Firewall and Secure Tunnel features, and Confirmed VPN is only the Secure Tunnel product. We recommend you use the Lockdown app to access both features.

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When will Lockdown be available on Android or Windows?

We are planning to bring Lockdown to Android and Windows in the near future! Keep an eye on our website for more details!

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I have a question not listed here.

Please open Lockdown, tap Account on the bottom right, then tap "Email Support" and send us your question - that's our preferred method. If you're not able to do that, then email us at team@lockdownprivacy.com. We're happy to help, and we'll get back to you as soon as possible. Please note that it may take 1-2 business days for us to respond - thank you for your patience!

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