The iPad is a wonderful device, but like your PC, it can contain quick access to information you may not want everyone to see. There are a number of great reasons to lock your iPad and keep it secure. For example, if you have young children in your household and you want to make sure they don't get access to the Internet, you can put a passcode on your iPad to keep them from picking it up and using it. Or, if you often have friends over and don't want a mischievous friend or co-worker to be automatically logged into your Facebook app, locking your iPad can be a good idea. And, of course, a passcode can stop a stranger from snooping around if you ever lose your iPad or it gets stolen.
Luckily, it is very easy to lock your iPad with a passcode to secure it from unfettered access. You can even choose between a 4 digit passcode similar to an ATM card or a full-fledged alphanumeric password.
First, you will want to go into your iPad's settings. You can get to these settings by clicking on the icon that looks like gears in motion. Help Opening the iPad's Settings
Locate the general settings on the left-side menu. Touching "General" will load the settings into the window on the right.
Choose Passcode Lock. The Passcode Lock option is just below Auto-Lock in the section below Spotlight Search. Choosing the option will load a new screen that looks similar to the one pictured above this article.
Simple Passcode On or Off? Before you lock the iPad, you will need to choose between a 4-digit passcode and an alphanumeric password that can be any length. The iPad will lock everyone out if the wrong passcode/password is entered too many times, starting with a minute lockout, then a five-minute lockout and eventually disabling the iPad completely. (How to Fix a Disabled iPad)
A good rule of thumb is to decide based on who you are trying to lock out of your iPad. If your primary concern is young children in the household, other family members or visiting friends, the default 4-digit passcode should be fine. If you are more worried about losing your iPad or having it stolen, you can take the additional step of using an alphanumeric password.
You can choose an alphanumeric password by moving the On switch next to Simple Passcode to the Off setting.
Turn Passcode On Once you touch the button to turn the passcode on, you will be presented with a window requesting your passcode or password. You will need to enter it twice to prevent accidentally typing in the wrong passcode. Once turned on, you will need to enter the passcode anytime you want to use the iPad. The passcode is triggered when you wake the iPad up and slide the button to begin using it. You will also need the passcode to get back into the passcode settings, so you won't be able to turn it off or change the passcode without entering it first.
You can also set up restrictions for your iPad, which can turn off certain features such as the Safari browser or YouTube. You can even restrict app downloads to apps appropriate for a certain age group. Find out more about enabling iPad restrictions.