Restore a Previous Backup
Apple gives every user limited iCloud storage for backing up their devices, making it a convenient option to restore your phone if you recently got a virus. However, if you've had a piece of malware for a long time, your iCloud backups may also have the virus stored in them. If you believe your device has been behaving suspiciously for a while now, skip this step and move on to the next.
1. How to Restore a Backup
Go to Settings, followed by General, Reset, and Erase All Content and Settings. At this point, the device will give you a few options. Select Restore from iCloud Backup and sign in with your Apple ID to authorize the process. You'll get to choose which backup to restore. Factory restore is the best option if you have a backup of your files. But if you intend to save your files, it’s best to choose some of the earliest versions of your backups. You can rename your backups as soon as you create them to know which ones are the safest options.
2. Reset to Factory Condition
if you simply want to start fresh, Apple offers a convenient option to reset your device to its original settings as if it were brand-new from the store. Any data that you didn't back up will be gone. On top of that, no viruses can stay past factory reset.
3. Disable Find My iPhone
Before erasing all data, files, and settings from your phone, you must remove it from the Find My iPhone service. To do this, open Settings and select your name at the top of the menu. From there, pick Find My and Find My iPhone. Turn off all of the settings for your active device.
4. How to Factory Reset an iPhone
In Settings, head to General and select Reset and Erase All Content and Settings. This time, enter your device's passcode and choose Erase. Confirm your decision to erase all of the settings and data stored on your phone. When it reboots, it'll look and act just like when you first brought it home.
Keeping Your iPhone Protected Against Viruses
Preventing a problem is always better than repairing the damage it causes. Now that you know not to click on unfamiliar links, there are a few other good practices to keep in mind to help keep your phone safe from malware in the future.
Only Download Apps from the App Store
It's possible to download and install safe apps from third-party sources, but it's best to avoid it if you can. Downloading licensed apps from the App Store ensures your iPhone is safe from the majority of malicious apps. Before downloading a new app from the App Store, take the time to check the reviews first. Apps with low ratings may have users calling it out for behaving like a virus. If the reviews say that it slows your device down, skip it and find an alternative.
Keep iOS Up to Date
Whenever Apple releases a new iOS update, it usually includes several security improvements. The latest version of iOS is always the safest one to have. Likewise, never download an older build of iOS unless it comes directly from Apple. Keep your phone running with an up-to-date operating system.
Keep Apps Up to Date
Apps with regular updates for bug fixes and security improvements are safe from a lot of security vulnerabilities. Like Apple, app developers may not discuss the details, but they still regularly monitor vulnerabilities and possible exploits to fix. It's a good idea to always make sure you download the newest version of an app. Apps whose developers haven't updated them in a long time could also have malware due to unfixed security exploits.
Tips: How to Detect and Remove a Virus From an iPhone
To get rid of an iPhone virus:
Understand where malware comes from: Clicking suspicious links and downloading unofficial apps can infect your phone.
Detecting the virus: Infected phones are slower and behave erratically.
Delete suspicious apps: Get rid of any apps showing suspicious behavior or any application you don’t remember downloading.
Clear website data and browser history: Some malware can live in local storage.
Restart your phone: Malware may spread with your phone on.
Restore a previous backup: If you can't pinpoint the virus’s origin, iCloud may contain a virus-free backup.
Restore your iPhone to factory settings: If all else fails, you'll need to erase your device and reset it to its original settings.
Having to remove a virus from your iPhone probably isn't your idea of a good afternoon, so be sure to take preventative measures with your device. Nobody wants to lose their personal photos because of a bad link in a text message.
If you think a virus is on your iPhone, there are ways to clean your device and protect yourself from future threats. You can also download proactive apps to protect your phone and your Mac from other malware, such as McAfee Total Protection.