iPhones and iPads Now Require a Passcode on Every Backup/Sync

Yes indeed.

And as my wife had to learn the hard way, that means even if you have an otherwise fine backup, if just one little part of it becomes corrupted, you are SOL. Lucky you if you still have the old phone and it works because then you can attempt an alternate backup (iCloud or iMazing), but if say that iPhone just got crushed by a truck, you would be completely effed. Not a nice design at all.