Preventing an iPhone From Deleting Textsby Melly Parker
When you get an important text message, locking it can help keep it from being deleted. However, the native Messages app on iOS doesn't have a lock feature for messages, which means that your iPhone's messages can be deleted at any time. If you hack the iPhone to install third-party apps that haven't been approved by Apple, you can replace Messages with an alternate program that allows you to lock text messages.
Apple keeps a close eye on the apps available on iOS devices, testing and approving every app on the App Store. To keep the devices Apple sells secure, it doesn't allow unapproved third-party apps to be installed on iPhones or iPads. Because there are no supported apps that will keep your text messages from being deleted, you must jailbreak your iPhone to lock text messages and prevent deletion.
Jailbreaking an iOS device was declared legal in the United States in 2010. Though it may void your warranty with Apple, as of publication, you can jailbreak your device whenever you please. When you jailbreak a phone, you're accessing the operating system -- iOS -- and forcing it to allow you to install programs and change settings not supported by the basic OS.
Preventing Text Deletion
To jailbreak your iPhone, download jailbreaking software and follow the prompts to complete the jailbreak. There are also services that provide a jailbreak for you for a fee. Once your jailbreak is complete, download a program like biteSMS, HandcentSMS or iRealSMS to your iPhone from an alternative app store like Cydia.
If you don't want to jailbreak your iPhone, but want to keep a copy of your texts, forward text messages you receive to your email inbox. You can also use a third-party app, like Google Voice, textPlus or Skype, to send and receive texts that are backed up automatically online. You'll have to alert your contacts to text you at the alternative phone number as set by the app, however.