Don't let your iPhone ap get into the wrong hands

Don't let your iPhone ap get into the wrong hands

Am visiting my son, daughter in law and grandson out of state. My 2 1/2 year old grandson is a little precocious and likes to play on our iPhones and iPads. When he plays up while we are traveling it is often simpler to let him play on the iPhone than to let him throw a tantrum. He known our passcodes and how to navigate through the various aps. He has a real fascination for my car (a good thing). When away I like to keep my car charged at 50 %. When I checked the other night my car was suddenly 90 % charged. I let in run down over a few days and dropped 20 miles through vampire loss by setting the charge level back down to 50 %. He got back on my ap today and I suddenly got a text that my car was charging again. In addition he was pressing other buttons in the control panel. We thought nothing of it until we got a frantic phone call from my mother in law who is watching our house while we are away. My car was going crazy with the horn honking and the pano roof opening and closing. She was about to call Tesla out of concern. I love my grandson's initiative and his fascination with my Tesla but I'm afraid I had to sign him out of my ap.

PV_Dave @US-PA | 12. November 2014

The Tesla app isn't the only inappropriate thing for a young child to be playing with on an adult's phone. It's really not a good idea to let young children play on smartphones. Buy a dedicated iPod touch or similar if you must give them a screen, but I think you're asking for trouble if you hand over your own device.

judimasters | 12. November 2014

There is another reason to not let someone else have access to the app. When I bought my car I was so excited about the technology, I put the app on my boyfriend's phone. I felt I was being watched all the time. He would communicate with me about where I was and he would honk my horn etc. So unnerving that I finally took it off his phone.

CalabasasKid | 12. November 2014

PV Dave wa putting it very politely. Personally, I think you got off easy. Advising us of the perils of letting a toddler play with your iPhone is about as obvious as telling us to watch out for speeding traffic when trying to cross the freeway by foot. Come on, really? I don't let my teenage kids have access to my iPhone let alone a toddler whom you know has your passcode.

Your iphone has access to a lot of sh t that can get you into more trouble than I could describe. Thanks for the heads up but I think most if not all of the owners on this forum who own a MS probably possess enough common sense to steer clear of anythjng so risky.

Captain_Zap | 12. November 2014


Can't he just load the app? I hope you changed your password. I leave remote access off unless someone else is using the car. ;-)

SCCRENDO | 12. November 2014

I agree with you guys. I would definitely keep older kids away from my iPhone. I underestimated the ability of my 21/2 year old grandson. Valuable lesson learned. I need to check my bank account next to see if I have any money left there.

judimasters | 12. November 2014

I never gave him my password and yes I did change it. We are no longer seeing each other so I felt it best.

bejachb | 12. November 2014

Hmm, why does the OP leave the App signed in, sounds like another clueless owner!

sberman | 12. November 2014

@SCCRENDO, I have a recommendation for you.

I am an Apple enthusiast, as well as an enthusiastic Tesla owner.

I recommend setting your iPhone up using Guided Access when your grandson may be using it. Guided Access limits your iPhone to a single app, and lets you control which app features are available. It is a way to restrict access to your iPhone or iPad (using a different passcode).

It is described more completely here:

bejachb | 13. November 2014

I have an idea, sign out of the app and do not give your 2 1/2 year old grandson your password or let me know when you give him your Apple Pay and other Banking Passwords, so we all can go on a buying spree!

mrspaghetti | 13. November 2014 is often simpler to let him play on the iPhone than to let him throw a tantrum...

Yes, it is a simple way to turn a kid into a spoiled, socially-impaired ass, in addition to the already-stated issues. Have you ever surfed around on YouTube? I'm sure you would be shocked at some of the video links that come up on a seemingly innocuous search. There are one or two web pages out there that might be just a teency, tiny bit borderline inappropriate as well, by the way. But what the hell, it keeps that damned nuisance kid out of your hair so you can do more important stuff.

SCCRENDO | 13. November 2014

Let's call it a minor lapse of judgement rather than a major catastrophe. He lives in a different state to me so does not have constant access to my phone. My phone is password and fingerprint protected. I leave the tesla ap signed in for my own convenience. I gave him my password 3 months ago. Didn't think he would remember it after 3 months. At 2 1/2 didn't think he would know how to charge my car as I've never shown him. Overall absolutely no harm. The worst he could have done is range charged my car and I would have had to leave it there for a week. My worst crime was underestimating the ability of my grandson at this age. I've learnt my lesson there but am absolutely not worried about my iPhone security. Posted this for 2 reasons. Firstly because I thought it was funny and secondly to remind others as I have been reminded here that we do have to be mindful of our phone security.

SCCRENDO | 13. November 2014

@mrspaghetti. Chill a little. Spend much valued time with my grandson. As grandparents we have set aside the whole week just to be with him and our time revolves completely around him. When driving between places we offer him an iPhone to watch cartoons for a short period while he sits in his car seat. But appreciate the lecture in parenting skills.

sklancha | 13. November 2014

@sCCRENDO.- I think I am the only one here that read your post the way you intended. It sounded like a nicely written story from a proud grandpa of an underestimated bright toddler- and you were just using it as an opportunity to remind the rest of us to keep our guards up.

@Dave and @mrspaghetti Wow- he really hit a nerve with you guys! That is how I typically react when I think I hear somebody who is spoiling a kid rotten and cluelessly putting the child in a dangerous situation... and I see how you guys jumped to that conclusion... but give gramps a LITTLE leeway. Lesson learned

"Hmm, why does the OP leave the App signed in, sounds like another clueless owner!"

harshly stated, but I must admit that I am also 'another clueless owner' that is more inclined to set things up for my convenience without considering the evils that may come my way. Your [albeit harsh] response did prompt me to turn the password on to the app, so thank you.


bejachb | 13. November 2014


And I guess you leave your house unlocked, combinations pre-set for any security items you make have or have the pin # for your ATM card written on the back for convenience . How long does it take to sign into the app? About 2 seconds! Next there will be a post from someone that dropped their phone, only to leave the restaurant and find their car is gone, and then they will blame Tesla.

Come on take some responsibility!

PV_Dave @US-PA | 13. November 2014

@sklancha: This did hit a nerve, as it's been a hot topic at our kids' school. But I see no reason to assume that the OP was a "bad grandparent" or "clueless".

In fact, I disagree with the idea that leaving the app logged in is "clueless", because unless you use 1Password or similar to manage your passwords and type them in for you, setting a sufficiently secure password means having one that's impractical to type in every time you want to access the car from your phone.

+1 @sberman: restricted access is a good suggestion, if in-app purchases have been disabled first.

We have become so accustomed to modern technology that we easily forget what it is. Giving a child unrestricted access to a cell phone is not that different from logging them into your laptop or desktop computer at home and then leaving the room. It is easy to forget that a cell phone is a small Internet connected computer, and unless locked down at sberman describes, is not an appropriate toy for children.

DTsea | 13. November 2014

I'm with mrspaghetti. Saying no is good for kids.... just do it kindly.... and taking phone away is a natural consequence.

Why does the child know all the ppasscods?

PV_Dave @US-PA | 13. November 2014

@dave: If your password only takes two seconds to enter on a mobile phone keyboard, then it's very easily hacked. Please remember that the same password is used on Tesla's web site, which is available for all the world to attack.

If your phone is protected by a fingerprint, then someone finding it will likely have a difficult time using the Tesla app.

Do you enter your email account password every time you retrieve email on your phone?

bejachb | 13. November 2014

@PV_Dave @US-PA

Not too hard to enter 10 digits into a password field, as all passwords can be hacked, I do not think a 2 1/2 year has that ability as of yet!

My phone auto locks after 15 seconds of inactivity as does my e-mail. My business e-mail is always logged out of and must be signed in each time as required by my profession. On the phone I have a generic e-mail that contains nothing that would do any hacker any good.

Fingerprint protection, if it is set. As any security company will tell you a fingerprint system that is actually secure will cost in the thousands of dollars, last I noticed some US Cell Phone Providers are practically giving the I-Phone away for free, so do not be so sure of the protection this marketing ploy actually provides.

bejachb | 13. November 2014

@PV_Dave @US-PA

If you know others have easy access to your phone and its apps than it is clueless, I guess you leave the gun case/safe unlocked as well when you know others that do not know better will have access.

TeoTeslaFan | 13. November 2014

I think it is a good thing something worse didn't happen. If he was playing with the app while you were driving it could be distracting and potentially dangerous if it caught you by surprise. Also if it happened at night time, the lights from locking and unlocking the car and pano roof sound etc. could appear as robbery in progress. If it happened at night time when you are away, somebody could call the cops to report a crazy person trying to steal your car.

I remember an incident where neighbors thought somebody was trying to break into their neighbors flat. The police came and arrested a black man but the person they arrested was the homeowner. Later Obama commented on this and said the police action was stupid.

Also I remember another incident when neighbors called the police and said somebody was weaving around a gun in neighbors garden. The police came and shot the man dead without any warning. The man was holding a garden hose in his hand.

In another incident a man heard sounds from his garage and thought somebody was stealing his car. He fired a shot killing the person in drivers seat instantly. But it was his teenage daughter sitting in drivers seat.

There are a lot of incidents like this where somebody hears a sound and mistakes it for an intruder. These stories are a bit crazy but they are all real and these things happen. I guess I have a talent to think the worse thing that could happen but when you said you were away and your mother in law was watching the house I thought why didn't she call the cops. I guess by chance it didn't happen at night time.

This also made me think of autopilot features. If you can summon the car anywhere things could get more interesting.

mrspaghetti | 13. November 2014

It is a sore spot with me, yes. My son's aunt brought him (without consulting us) a tablet last time she visited, and of course that's all he wanted after that. Fortunately he managed to break it, otherwise I would have ended up disabling it or "losing" it myself.

Using those things and ignoring the people around you is bad enough with adults. For kids, who are still developing their brains, they are toxic. It is frustrating that so many people view them not only as harmless, but actually a really neato thing that makes parenting so much easier, yay!

At least if a kid is throwing a tantrum in the car he is interacting with you somehow. And I think it should be obvious that if you give him what he wants to avoid a tantrum, then you'll get a lot of those. God forbid the kid sings a song in the car, or plays "I Spy" with you, or something like that.

PV_Dave @US-PA | 13. November 2014

@dave: If you can enter 10 "difficult to guess" digits into your phone in 2 seconds, then you're faster than me. But then my typical use of a mix of numbers and letters for enhanced security tends to slow me down.

Saving the Tesla app password is a completely different issue from letting others use your phone. Your post above:

"Hmm, why does the OP leave the App signed in, sounds like another clueless owner!"

Did not say "why does the OP leave the App signed in when giving his phone to others". I was responding to your assertion that leaving the app signed in was clueless. Now you're changing the context while trying to defend your prior post.

Oh, and I agree that fingerprints are certainly not bulletproof. But again, when you spoke in your prior post about dropping a phone in a restaurant and someone finding it and running off with your car, proper passcode or fingerprint authentication combined with a short auto-lock and a good habit of manually locking when not actively using the phone will mitigate that. I don't know what the iPhone's touch ID FAR is, but dropping your key FOB is probably a greater risk, since that requires no authentication at all.

Or are you typing your password into the FOB every time you use it? ;-)

logicalthinker | 13. November 2014

I recently ended up totally locking my phone and various critical apps ON the phone, because my 5 year old was deleting stuff and moving stuff around and it was a *pain*. Now he's pretty much given up on my phone.

Which is nice, because it stays on the charger instead of floating around the house....

logicalthinker | 13. November 2014

@mrspaghetti, yes, there is a growing body of medical evidence that excess media exposure (iPads, cellphones, computers, TV) is developmentally harmful and as such should be severely limited.

Even for adults the above can be an issue, and in fact there is now a medical diagnosis of internet addiction.

J.T. | 13. November 2014

@SCCRENDO You go right on spoiling your grand kids. That's your job. If you raised your children right, and I'd bet you did, it's their job to unspoil them.

Enjoy!! Don't let the turkeys get you down . . . even around Thanksgiving.

bejachb | 13. November 2014

@PV_Dave @US-PA

I know of many people dropping, leaving or losing their phones, but not many losing their keys and or the fob, normally kept in a pocket. I just hope you are not going to be a future poster who is left clueless on how you MS was stolen, only to find out it was because you did not want to be inconvenienced by signing out of app. Or will you be the poster that blames Tesla and want the app to be retro-fitted to automatically sign itself out after a min or so?

Yes leaving the app signed in and wondering why things may or may not happen, indicates the person is clueless as to what the results can lead to.

I am done with this, do as you wish, it is your phone, your car and your life, just hope you and the others do not take another ones life because of child or someone else using your Tesla app.

Bighorn | 13. November 2014

Spoiling your grandkids is the only socially acceptable way to get back at your kids.

SCCRENDO | 13. November 2014

I see all the kind loving grandparents are on my side. Thanks guys. I fully understand the issues with phone hacking etc. All my bank accounts, credit cards are on separate complicated passwords. My car, spa remote, solar panels and home airconditioner are not. In general no one has possession of my phone and even if stolen, harm will be minimal. Also am fully cognizant of the negative effects of a kid with his nose buried in the IPad. Important to point these issues out to many who may be naiive in these areas but I think I'm okay on this one.

mrspaghetti | 13. November 2014


Sorry if I come across as harsh. I have personal reasons for feeling very strongly about this; I do not doubt that you are a good grandparent.

SCCRENDO | 13. November 2014

@mrspaghetti. All is forgiven.

J.T. | 13. November 2014

@Bighorn +1

DTsea | 13. November 2014

Dave to start car with app requires reentry of password and password is not accessible from within the app. Not a problem if you lose your phone.

Turns out the Tesla people aren't stupid. Go figure.

bejachb | 13. November 2014


True but still an issue for those that may know it and have access to it.

DTsea | 13. November 2014

@dave your scenario was lost phone and car theft. Finder would not have password.

Captain_Zap | 13. November 2014


I, too, worry about kids that interact with devices instead of people, their environment and the rest of the world. I think it is a very valid concern. Too many adults are oblivious and they didn't have devices as a handicap while growing up. | 13. November 2014

Hmm. Really smart grandson; not so smart Grandpa.
Reminds me of a time many years ago when I proudly showed my new Apple II+ to my brother with his 6 month old son in his arms. The kid reached out and shut the computer down with one quick stroke...

Wait until Tesla installs autopilot software. There will for sure be a post by somebody whose 2 year-old grandson uses a smartphone to drive the car to an ice cream store. | 13. November 2014

And uses Apple pay to buy some ice cream.

Thumper | 13. November 2014

Sad example of humble-bragging, OP just wanted to tell us how bright the grandchild supposedly is.

bejachb | 13. November 2014


Unless the finder is the 2 1/2 year old grandson and if not him the finder could do some serious damage when the get pissed that they can not start it.

TeoTeslaFan | 13. November 2014

I think it is amazing that even a toddler can understand a graphical user interface. The poor kid just wanted the car to have more charge. By the way, if somebody wants to buy such a gift, on amazon I found a remote control car with honk and flashlight controls:

Captain_Zap | 13. November 2014


I attribute it to collective consciousness or something like that. Rupert Sheldrake's research isn't widely accepted, but I fell for it. Some of it is a stretch. It isn't for everyone.

AERODYNE | 06. Februar 2019

SCCRENDO. Not just phones. My wife was letting a grand nephew play in a relative 80's Mercedes. He grabbed the shift lever and pulled it into Nuetral. Car went down the driveway and across the street threw wife to the curb, mild con concussion. I was going let same kid, now older, plan the Atari games in my MS, but after reading your email experience, gonna thin k twice..

SCCRENDO | 06. Februar 2019

This is a very old thread. I only had one grandson then. He is now 6 1/2. And I have 2 other grandsons and a nearly 3 year old granddaughter. She get s to look at stuff on Amazon while she sits on the toilet. She ordrered many items from Amazon before my wife and daughter discovered this. Yes you need to make your iPhones child proof.

AERODYNE | 06. Februar 2019

Glad I have Android...but seriously, since they now have games on the car, probably good info for some newer owners to see our experiences Sorry if I brought back a bad memory.

"Good judgement comes from experience. Unfortunately, a lot of experience comes from bad judgement"


SCCRENDO | 06. Februar 2019

No a good memory. I am glad my grandkids are smart. It is us that are not so smart. We underestimate the youngsters