Category: Apple iOS

How to Watch BBC Iplayer Abroad on Ipad From Outside the UK

This page is for all of those who get really fed up that the minute we step outside the UK all the online UK TV sites stop working. Especially of course the BBC iPlayer, which many of us use everyday! If you want to watch BBC Iplayer on a PC/Laptop – Try this post first – How to Use a Proxy to access Iplayer – below follows step by step instructions on using BBC iPlayer abroad on your iPad. If you don’t want security and just want the easiest method to watch British TV without using a VPN there’s another option suggested at the end of this article.

I’ve been using the VPN function of Identity Cloaker for several years to access the BBC abroad on my computer. However I often get emails about whether you can use it on different devices to watch BBC, ITV and other online TV players. Well you can use it on most devices, including Smartphones, tablets and laptops.

Anyway here’s simply how to set up Identity Cloaker on the iPad, the steps for an iPhone, Mac or Android Device are pretty similar too- details if you’re using Identity Cloaker are in the members area.

Accessing the BBC Iplayer (and ITV player) on these devices is actually pretty simple to do.  The reason is that the vast majority of their security servers are VPN enabled. That means  all you have to do is set a simple VPN connection on your iPad to a specific server and then you can enable it whenever needed to view abroad.   The functionality is built into the iPad so nothing too difficult is required – let’s show an example for accessing the BBC iPlayer channels abroad.

So How Can You Watch BBC Iplayer Abroad? Even From the US on Your IPad?

Right, so most of us have discovered that if you happen to be outside the UK, then the BBC Iplayer won’t work properly.  When you connect to the IPlayer site it checks your IP address to see where you are located.  If it discovers that you are connecting from outside the United Kingdom then you won’t be able to watch anything ! To be fair, BBC Iplayer is not the only media site to do this.   Hulu blocks all non-US access – the same goes for ABC, NBC and Pandora too. The great little media player from the French broadcaster M6Replay is also limited to access within France (if you know someone learning French get them to check it out – it’s great practice watching the Simpsons in French!)

The solution on the PC is very simple, you just use something like Identity Cloaker to conceal your true IP address and present one from the correct country.  The solution is actually similar on the IPad (you can use the same technique on the Mac/Iphone/Ipod as well) – you just need to connect to a server based in the UK (or which ever country you need).

For this all you need to do is to set up a VPN (Virtual Private Network) to the country in question, for the BBC it’s obviously the UK. This video shows the steps needed, it’s called Setting up a VPN on an iPad


How to Watch BBC iPlayer Abroad on iPad – Step by Step

If you prefer pictures, then here’s how you set up the VPN on the iPad it takes about a minute if  you have the information to hand.   Just set it up, enable the VPN and you’ll be watching the BBC Player outside UK borders in no time at all.


On your iPad –

  1. Select Settings
  2. Select General
  3. Select Networks
  4. Select VPN

This should bring you to this screen –

how to watch bbc iplayer abroad on ipad

You can see in this screen I’ve already set up a US VPN which I use for Hulu and Pandora.  Here you just need to select Add VPN Configuration and you should reach this screen.

Identity Cloaker ipad

It looks complicated but honestly it’s not.

You just need to leave it set to L2TP at the top and then put the following details in.  You’ll need to get the details from Identity Cloaker for section 2 and 6 which you can find in their members area.  If you’re using a different VPN provider it’s likely you’ll have to do the same (although a couple publish the information I think)

  1. Description – Give it a name like UK VPN, US VPN then you can select quickly which country you need
  2. Server – Get the enabled VPN server names from the members area.
  3. Account Name – Your IDC Username
  4. RSA SecurID – Ignore this
  5. Password – Your IDC password.
  6. Secret – Get the VPN Secret Name from the members area.
That’s the tricky bit over with, next click Save from the top right hand corner.  The next step is to enable your VPN connection.
Connecting to the UK VPN
To do this you simply select whichever VPN configuration that you need, so if you’re in the US and want to watch the BBC then create and enable a UK VPN.  In this screen just select enable and it will turn on your VPN – this will route your connection through the UK VPN servers.
The status will change to connected and in the top left hand side of your Ipad it will show that the VPN is connected like this.
UK VPN Connected

When this VPN is connected, all your traffic is encrypted and routed through whichever server you are connected to.  It’s best to disconnect after watching unless you want all your browsing routed through the UK.

Be careful when you’re choosing a service to use on your iPad, if you search online you’ll see many posts about a BBC iPlayer VPN not working.   This is because most of these services have been blocked by the BBC and other channels so you won’t be able to watch any UK TV abroad on iPad if you use these.  Pick a proper security service like Identity Cloaker not one the TV streaming vpns, they’re easy to detect and don’t work anymore.

If you haven’t got Identity Cloaker yet – I can definitely recommend it, it’s probably best to try the trial first to see how you get on with it.  They have a very professional set up and the servers can cope with streaming video without any issues . They are also undetectable so you you won’t have the common issues that many services have with BBC iPlayer detecting VPN connections and blocking them.  They have many UK and US servers plus ones in France, Germany, Poland, Ireland, Sweden, Australia to name but a few – all included in the subscription.  It’s also one of the few services which allows you to watch Sky Go abroad too, but you’ll need a valid subscription first.
Here’s the link for Identity Cloaker – I can recommend the 10 day trial subscription here to try it out first.

This method may work with other VPN providers who have set their servers up properly though – just ask them.   I have just discovered another interesting alternative for those of us looking on how to watch bbc iplayer abroad on ipad. It’s called Smart DNS, it’s arguably easier that using a VPN especially on devices like iPads.  It’s called Smart DNS and only takes two minutes to set up, if you follow the instructions – what’s more they have a free trial which you can test – free trial of Smart DNS.

Apple ID/ICloud Temporarily Locked

With rather apt timing, considering my last post – I had this very convincing email arrive today.  Now many of you may have received the same, but it’s a perfect example of what I was talking about – the quality of phishing emails with dodgy links embedded is growing by the week.  It’s actually very old at least three years, yet the format and presentation has improved over the years and it looks much more convincing nowadays.

Here’s the Apple ID Email spam I got – the white marks are where my correct email address where inserted.

Apple ID Temporarily Locked


It’s basically suggesting my Apple/Itunes account has been hacked and to save it I need to authenticate the password.   Now it looks pretty convincing, the format is nicked entirely from a genuine Apple email.  My real email address has been inserted in the text, which makes it look more genuine.  The support link is completely correct so if you clicked to validate the site you’d come to the real Apple ID support site.

In fact the only thing that is wrong with this email is the link for verifying your account – which takes you here.

Apple ID Scam


Again a genuine looking page, (in fact a direct copy of the Apple ID login screen), just hosted on a very dodgy sounding domain – .   If you proceed you’ll be have to supply not only your Apple ID but credit card information and other personal details.  Those will of course end up in the hands of cyber criminals fully able to cause some serious damage to your financial status!

There’s every reason to believe these are going to get better and better in quality, more likely to be specifically targeted (Spear phishing) and much more difficult to spot.  At the moment the real giveaway is the crappy sounding domain/url that you have to type your details in, but there are ways of redirecting these and masking the true destinations.

Basically never click on a link sent to you in an email, particularly if it asks you to enter any personal details what so ever. Legitimate companies never send these links, so you should never use them.  If you want to visit or login into a site then go directly to their URL or use your own link (although I’m waiting for an attack that starts modifying peoples bookmarks!).

If it’s in an email then basically you should be extremely suspicious, look for reasons why it may be false.


Apple iOS Hacker Banned

You’d think computer companies would learn wouldn’t you, when you see someone who points out a problem with your code, hardware or processes then you should thank them, embrace them – heck employ them if you can.   Apple however have failed dismally in their response to Charlie Miller’s assistance on highlighting the problems in the App Store security process.

Photo Charlie Miller – Twitter@0xcharlie

I means there’s two types of people out there who do this sort of hacking – white hat guys like Charlie Miller who will demonstrate the vulnerabilities, publish proof of concepts and let the company know. Of course it can be slightly embarrasing sometimes when you’ve dropped a bit of a clanger but there is an upside.

The upside is that the other type of people don’t get chance to figure it out – the Bulgarian uber hacker working underground for a Russian or Brazilian cyber criminal gang who exploit the hole after they’ve found it.

So what did Charlie Miller actually do?

Well it’s probably best to let the author demonstrate – make sure you watch it until the end to see the full extent of what this hack is capable of !

Pretty incredible heh!! The potential of this in the hands of the bad guys is probably what scared Apple and made them act like a spoilt brat by kicking Charlie Miller off the iOS developer program. White hat hackers as talented as this guy should be treated a bit better even if he did perhaps break a few little terms and conditions to illustrate the vulnerability.

I haven’t thought about the criminal possibilities of this but I am sure there are many beyond downloading everyone’s address book. I confess I’m still stuck on the prank possibilities of having every iPhone on the planet vibrate at exactly the same time. Pointless but fun and pandering to my inner megalomania without causing any real harm! If only I was as clever as Charlie Miller !!

Hopefully the kicking Apple is currently getting in the online media for their reaction will make them think again. Perhaps in some high up meeting somewhere in Apple Towers it will occur to someone that they should be actually thanking this guy. Otherwise they should get worried if he starts taking long holidays in Moscow next year.