Lockdown Mode for Android

With Android Pie, Google finally added a lockdown mode similar to iOS’s panic mode which allows a user to quickly set a phone so it can only be unlocked with a password or PIN. This allows a user to use facial recognition or fingerprints for most unlock situations, while being able to switch to password only when, say, being pulled over by police.

The toggle to enable lockdown mode is in the Security & Locations options under the Lock Screen Preferences. Since Android manufacturers tend to customize these settings, I just did a search for “lockdown mode” to get to the correct setting.

Once enabled, users simply need to hold down the power button which will display a number of options including one for “Lockdown mode.” Selecting that option will place the phone in lockdown mode and require the password to access the phone.

Once the phone is unlocked with a password, it will revert to whatever normal methods of unlocking the phone are set. This is only intended to lockdown the phone temporarily not change the unlock behavior permanently.

This capability presents a nice security tradeoff. I can make my phone relatively easy for me to unlock during most situations, while still having the ability to quickly force my phone into a more restricted mode that would be harder to access.

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