If you’re in Apple’s ecosystem, you’ll need to take a bit more care when deleting your browser history. It turns out that iCloud stores all browsing history, including ‘cleared’ history dating back at least a year, and maybe even longer.
Vladimir Katalov, CEO of Elcomsoft, the maker of various hacking tools, tells Forbes that he discovered this issue when browsing the history on his own phone. Using the Phone Breaker tool developed by his company, he found that iCloud keeps a record of data, even deleted data, going back at least a year.
Apple syncs data between your Apple devices using iCloud, a remote server that syncs data between clients. Servers normally do need a log of deleted data as well to ensure that syncing happens properly, but this data is usually obfuscated to outsiders.
In this case, Katalov and other experts that Forbes consulted appear to believe that Apple simply forgot to make the necessary changes to the platform.
Speaking to a senior ACLU analyst, Forbes has discovered that while the information is available online, it’s almost impossible to access without the username and password of the person whose phone has been compromised. Essentially, law enforcements and criminals will find it almost impossible to access.
If this is indeed something that Apple simply forgot about, the fix should be quite simple.
The best way to avoid getting caught up in this whole hassle is to simply disable iCloud syncing features, particularly on Safari.