I'm trying to make a backup from my iPhone, however it's set to be password protected. I do not know the password, as I've never set one. I've tried all the passwords I know, which I've ever used to make sure I didn't set it.

I've also tried the default 0000 and 1234 codes.

I want to uncheck the encryption checkbox in iTunes, but it requires me to type a password. What else can I try?

I have no problems in removing all backups and start from the scratch somehow, however - I do not want to restore my phone as new and remove all those settings.


2 Answers 2


The short answer is no. The phone thinks you are a thief trying to steal the data and won't cooperate with attempts to initiate a second backup. Your best bet is if you have a computer that was syncing / backing up the device and follow the steps listed for a disabled device with a passcode:

Once your iOS device is locked with a passcode, the data at rest is scrambled and the decryption key is only stored inside the iOS keychain or inside a backup of the device in iCloud or on a computer.

Even if you connected the device to a computer and got past the hardware telling the USB storage to not present itself - you would need to perform a decryption of whatever forensic image you retrieved.

Without knowing your situation (exact device, iOS version, whether it's an older device that doesn't have Data Protection, where else you may have backed up the device so that you could try restoring a backup onto an unlocked device (where you could then choose a different passcode) it's hard to guess what your best move is next.

You could:

  • edit more details into the question
  • ask a follow on question once you've explored your options
  • Contact Apple to do some troubleshooting / learn more options
  • This answer isn't factually accurate and appears to have misunderstood what the OP was asking (I'm confused why it's marked it as an accepted answer). The OP was asking how to clear the backup passphrase in iTunes, stating "I want to uncheck the encryption checkbox in iTunes, but it requires me to type a password... I have no problem... removing all backups and start[ing] from the scratch" To clear the iTunes backup passphrase, all settings on the iPhone must be reset (only the settings, not the iPhone itself)
    – JW0914
    Commented Dec 13, 2021 at 12:09

If you have no problem deleting your backup, this problem is a breeze:

  1. Open iTunes → Preferences → Devices

  2. Select your phone → Delete the backup

    • If you want an additional safety net, copy your backup directory:
      # MacOS
        ~/Library/Application Support/MobileSync/Backup
      # Windows:
        %AppData%\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup
  3. Once backup is deleted, simply create a new backup from scratch

  • 1
    This will not allow the creation of a new backup passphrase - in order to clear the backup passphrase, all settings on the iPhone need to be reset (settings reset, not the device itself)
    – JW0914
    Commented Dec 13, 2021 at 12:11
  • I tried this, deleting the existing encrypted backup. I also tried changing the password without entering the old password. It acts as if it successfully changed the password, but it still makes any new backup as encrypted with the old backup password, which of course makes it useless.
    – August
    Commented Feb 18 at 23:44

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