Is iPhone Fingerprint Security Secure At All? (Op-Ed)

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tiedwai

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Jan 10, 2013
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I'm really sad I wasted 3 minutes reading this article, but since I did...

1. Wow, really, nothing is truly secure??? MIND BREAKING NEWS!!! ( Don't know why it needed to take so many paragraphs to illustrate this point)

2. The fingerprint sensor's purpose is not to be the ultimate shield of digital information. It is for the lazy
 

lansiman

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Sep 21, 2013
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why not enforce all phone to login code?because its hassle if you type password 128 times a day.

this article suggest nothing is secure so we should do nothing bout it. idiotic mind,this is just the first step of security tech evolution,everyone think like you there will be no advancement in technology,just sit and picking fault
 

edogawa

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Nothing is secure, never separate yourself from your phone, and you will be safe. I use an APP locker on my phone and can locate it with GPS using any PC too in case something were to happen.
 

Panssarikauha

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May 29, 2013
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Horrible journalism... The proof here was that there are malware apps, theorycrafting and cracking a "security token" (USB drive?) apparently from 2000, thats 13 years ago. The rest was just fearmongering and empty possibilities. No actual security flaw was pointed out in the new iPhones, just rephrasing that "anything CAN be hacked". This was bad, only made to get the clicks with a hot-button issue as the headline but with no actual content anywhere. Shame on you.
 

aisalem

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Sep 23, 2011
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If you all will read with understanding then you will catch the point of the whole article. It's not about telling that nothing is secure but to point that you cannot change your fingerprints (like passwords) and by putting it on cheap, low level of security device you're simply compromising one of your biological IDs that might be used in future for something more than just unlocking your phone.
 

brucek2

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Apple is offering this feature as a convenience, not as a new breakthrough in maximum security applications. This article reads like a rebuttal to a claim that was never made in the first place.

If press reports are to be believed any law enforcement organization or anyone who knows anyone in that community can already obtain an adapter that will quickly download all memory & storage from any iphone that they can gain even brief physical possession of, with or without any unlock code.

Few if any ordinary individuals currently take any action to protect their own fingerprints, which are therefore already obtainable by anyone with access to their office, home, car, or places they frequent -- or phone that they obtain.
 

Akizu

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Aug 11, 2011
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If someone steals your iphone to get your fingerprints he doesn't have to hack it as your fingerprints are all over it and a professional will have a way to scan them. And for all the thieves that steal iphones to resell them... They don't care about your fingerprint data... They just want to remove the lock and wipe your data clean so they can resell the phone. Some may look for credit card data, passwords, etc. but most don't bother.
As long as there is decent control over which apps can access this data and fingerprint sensor, everything will be fine.
I just hope that some Android phones will get fingerprint readers too in near future as its a good feature.
 

unrealswat

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Feb 6, 2013
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Just to point out, whilst it may be some people are lazy, remember the accessibility issues regarding someone that is blind using their iPhone, they have no benefit to a pass code lock as they require the iPhone to read out the character they are about to press. So therefore all they've done is tell everyone their passcode, even if they use a headphone unless they are using both what's to say nobody else has picked up and is listening to the other one, it sounds silly but they can't SEE it.

Finger print security makes sense for these people, an easy way to have some privacy on their phone AND still be easy to use.
 

truerock

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Jul 28, 2006
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I'll agree that this was a very poorly written article. The questions raised are legitimate - the analysis was irrational.

Apple has implemented the first widely used biometric security technology. It will be interesting to see how well it plays out. My initial impression is that this might be a significant improvement to smart phone access security.

I currently use RoboForm as my smart-phone credentials database. I assume that within a year or 2 Apple will have a superior solution.
 

popatim

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Has no one but me realized that the print used to access the 5 will be ALL OVER THE CASE already?

LMAO.
60 seconds with a fingerprint brush, black and bi-chromatic powder, and lifting tape will get you all the access you want..
 

maddad

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Feb 22, 2006
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My 3-4 yr old Motorola Atrix 4g has a fingerprint reader. I like it much better than having to type in a password all the time. Is it accurate, can it be spoofed? It doesn't even like my finger half the time. Why is it this only gets criticism when "Apple" adds it to a device.
 

ap3x

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Popatim, You do realize that the iPhone 5s fingerprint reader is sub dermal right. It is actually a capacitance reader. The outer layer where your finger print is non-conductive, the sub-dermal layer is actually conductive. So the iPhone's Biometric sensor is actually reading the differences in conductivity to create the print. You won't be able to bypass it with just a lifted print as your suggesting.

Also, keep in mind that the outer ring is used to let the sensor know to activate. It may also be emitting a small current to make the capacitance clearer to read. This would also explain why it works even when your finger is placed on the button in a different position. This is something that a traditional finger print reader would have a hard time with.

At some point you guys should just give them a little credit. The way they have engineered this thing is pretty solid.
 

dizzy_davidh

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I just don't see what the big deal is. Most folk lock their phone with a four digit key combo which is hardly the Engima code!

As for the integrity of the finger-print data itself the answer is simply don't use it for anything other than unlocking your phone and keep all your other pass-codes away from the likes of 'remember me' cookies, pass-code and login key-chains and anything that would allow access to your mail.

Realistically nothing is secure, hell RSA has just told it's customers not to use the tech that relies on it's Ignition algorithm which includes about about 40 million number-generator key-fobs they produced in the past decade all of which are supposedly compromised (I remember a website that lived for about a day that let you predict the next number of an RSA token, and 'Yes' it worked, so it should not have been news that Ignition is busted but as an NSA/CIA hit sqaud probably killed the site owner, the story never got far).
 
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