How to Remove Text Messages from iPhone Spotlight Search

If you use the Spotlight Search feature on your iPhone, then you are probably aware of how much easier it can make it to find specific information. It’s easy to forget if you read something in an email or a text message, so searching for a phrase can often lead to the desired result.

But one of the downsides of indexing all of this information is that other people with access to your iPhone can use Spotlight Search to find data as well. If you are worried about something from a text message that might come up in a search, then our guide below will show you how to remove the Messages app from Spotlight Search results on your iPhone.


Stop Including Messages in Spotlight Search on an iPhone 5

These steps were performed in iOS 9.3, on an iPhone 5. These steps will adjust the way that Spotlight Search operates on your iPhone by not including text from your iMessages or text messages in the search results. Other apps and data will be unaffected by this change.

Step 1: Tap the Settings icon.

hide messages iphone spotlight search


Step 2: Scroll down and tap the General option.

disable messages in spotlight search results


Step 3: Select the Spotlight Search option.

stop including text messages in iphone search


Step 4: Scroll down and tap the button to the right of Messages to turn it off. Messages will not be included in search results when there is no green shading around the button. Messages have been removed from Spotlight Search in the picture below.

how to add or remove text messages from spotlight search


Note that the effects should be almost immediate.

While these steps will help to remove your messages from search results, all that is required for them to display is for someone to turn them back on. This is one of several reasons why you may want to consider using a passcode to lock your iPhone if you are worried about other people reading your private and personal information if they have access to your iPhone.