How To Clear Your iPhone Cache (and Why You Should)

Clearing your iPhone’s cache is one of the easiest ways to boost your online security. Our detailed guide shows you how to clear the cache on your iPhone in a few simple steps.
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When was the last time you cleared your iPhone cache? If you’re like most people, it's probably somewhere at the bottom of your mental to-do list. However, a cache build-up can slow down your iPhone, eat up your storage, and even put you at risk.

Clearing your iPhone cache is the first step toward online security. We also recommend using a good VPN for extra privacy. Keep reading to learn how to delete unnecessary data and what happens if you don't.

In this article
What is iPhone cache?
Why would you clear your iPhone cache?
How to clear cache on iPhone
How to clear cache on iPhone FAQ
Bottom line

What is iPhone cache?

While you're using your iPhone, its apps and browser store some data to reduce load times in the future. For example, cached images make web pages open faster since they can pull images from the cache instead of loading them. The same goes for videos, documents, game data, maps, and more. It's all about storing data for quicker re-access.

Based on its origin, we differentiate between two types of cached info:

  • App cache: Apps will download images, videos, and files to your iPhone storage. This ensures quicker app access, reduced loading times, better performance, and lower data usage.
  • Browser cache: Your browser stores website data for each page you visit (scripts, videos, images, web pages). This allows quicker access to websites and reduces your data usage.

Why would you clear your iPhone cache?

When you clear browsing cache and app data, you ensure the optimal performance of your iPhone. Here's an overview of the most important benefits of adopting this habit:

  • Improving performance: The main goal of data caching is to make apps and sites load faster. However, it does the exact opposite if you let it overwhelm your storage. Your cache will also contain outdated or corrupted data, which can cause crashes and glitches.
  • Freeing up storage space: Cached data can take up significant storage space over time. By clearing it regularly, you'll ensure better iPhone performance.
  • Boosting your privacy and security: Your cache can contain sensitive info like login tokens and passwords. Hackers who attack your device can steal this data and wreak havoc on your accounts.

How to clear cache on iPhone

Clearing your iPhone cache is quick and straightforward. It should be part of your regular online safety hygiene. Below, we outline how to clear browsing data and app cache on an iPhone.

Clearing Safari browser cache

Safari lets you clear your browsing cache in a few simple steps. Here's how to do it:

  • Open Safari on your iPhone
  • Tap the pages icon and then the clock icon

iPhone Browser

iPhone History Cache

  • From there, you can select how much of your browsing history you want to clear
  • Tap Clear History

Clearing app cache

Apple doesn't offer a universal option for clearing app data. You can either clear your cache in the app or reinstall it.

To clear your cache in the app, go to its settings and look for that option. Apps may use terms like “Clear cache,” “Clear data,” or “Clear storage.” Follow the prompts to clear your cache. Note that some apps might hide this option or not offer it at all.

If the app doesn’t let you clear the cache, you can delete and reinstall it. Deleting the app removes the cache and any associated data.

What happens if you don’t clear your iPhone cache?

Allowing cached data to build up can have several negative consequences. Here are the most important ones:

  • Exposure of personal info: Your cache includes browsing history, login credentials, and other private data. Criminals can use this info to hack your iPhone. Removing it will help you protect your iPhone and keep cybercriminals at bay.
  • Tracking and profiling: If someone steals your cached data, they can sell it to third parties. These can range from marketers to hackers. So, the potential consequences include anything from tracking and profiling to full-blown attacks.
  • Vulnerability to exploits: Outdated or corrupt cache data can create security vulnerabilities hackers can exploit.
  • Accumulation of malware: iPhones can cache malicious software and scripts, compromising the device or providing a back door for malware attacks.

Boost your privacy and security even further by installing a VPN on your iPhone. It will mask your true identity and hide your traffic from prying eyes. In other words, no one will know how you are or what you're doing online.

What are the best VPNs for iPhone?

A good VPN is an essential part of any privacy/security setup. With that in mind, take a look at our best VPNs for iPhones.

  • NordVPN: NordVPN is a high-quality service with a perfect speed/security balance. It supports up to 6 devices and has over 6,000 servers in 60+ countries. NordVPN also offers malware protection, remote file access, and dark web monitoring.

    Get NordVPN | Read NordVPN Review

  • Surfshark: Surfshark is an affordable VPN service with high speeds, support for unlimited devices, and loads of additional features. It operates 3,200+ servers in 100 countries and has an excellent iOS app.

    Get Surfshark | Read Surfshark Review

  • ExpressVPN: With ExpressVPN, you can expect a fast, secure service with high-end servers in 105 countries. It was the first provider to launch a proprietary VPN router, which allows you to protect all the devices in your home.

    Get ExpressVPN | Read ExpressVPN Review

How to clear cache on iPhone FAQ


Should you clear the cache on your iPhone?

Yes, clearing your iPhone cache is an essential component of staying safe online. Installing a VPN, using antivirus software, and clearing your cache can optimize your phone but also protect you from hackers.


How can I clear app cache on my iPhone?

You can clear your app cache in two ways: deleting data through the app's settings or by reinstalling the app. When clearing your cache, keep login information handy or use a password manager to make logging in again easier.


Is it safe to delete iPhone cache?

Not only is it safe to delete your iPhone cache, but we strongly recommend deleting your cache for optimal performance and security.


Is there a downside to clearing iPhone cache?

While there is an inconvenience factor in clearing your cache (since you lose all previous preferences and any logged data), the benefits of clearing your iPhone cache far supersede the negatives.


How often should I clear the cache on my iPhone?

Protect your personal information and clear your cache regularly, removing old data and helping safeguard your identity. A good rule of thumb is to clear your cache every month or two.

Bottom line

Clearing your iPhone's site data and app cache is a quick, efficient way to improve its functionality and ensure your online privacy. We also recommend using a good VPN and a reliable antivirus program for extra security. Antivirus software can prevent and remove malware from your iPhone and keep things running smoothly and efficiently. Taking simple preventative measures to protect your device from hackers can save you time and money.

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Author Details
Courtney Daybell is a professional writer interested in online privacy. With a bachelor's degree in communications from Brigham Young University, she has written for more than 15 years with a strong foundation in print journalism.