Apple Inc. on Tuesday began rolling out a security patch to protect iPhone owners from cyberthieves.

The new iOS setting, called Stolen Device Protection, blocks intruders from taking over customers’ accounts, accessing saved passwords, and stealing money.

Apple’s new feature comes after a Wall Street Journal report on a nationwide string of thefts where criminals in New York, Chicago and other cities used the iPhone passcode to break into victims’ accounts and disrupt their lives.

The feature, now in beta mode, will be rolled out with the iOS 17.3 update.

Apple’s stock

rose on Tuesday and have gained nearly 50% this year.

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