Concerns Raised Over Apple’s New Finger Print Scanning Technology
You probably know that when Apple released its new products last month, there was the new technology where the devices can be unlocked by the owner’s fingerprint. Many Apple customers were excited at this feature on the iPhone 5s and iPad. People flocked stores selling the iPhone 5s in the thousands on the first day it went to sale. The flagship feature on the iPhone 5s is the finger print scanner and many people with the phone are happy with the privacy the feature offers them.
But it is now emerging that the feature may cause serious breach of privacy. Among the first people to raise concerns over the finger print system is Senator Al Franken who chairs the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology and the Law. The Senator is concerned with the legality of Apple storing biometric data of users. He also wants the CEO Tim Cook to explain how Apple plans to protect that data so that it is completely inaccessible by hackers.
The biggest fear is; if hackers are able to access the biometric data, they can take the finger print scans and turn them into images effectively having hundreds of thousands of finger prints which they can then use to access devices and other user accounts which can be accessed by providing matching finger prints. Hell, even criminals could take investigators on wild goose chases by leaving sets of stolen finger prints on crime scenes. There really is no telling how far this could go, if hackers were able to access this data.
The Senator’s concern might sound a bit farfetched until you realize that a website by the name ‘istouchidhackedyet.com’ is offering reward to any individual or group which will prove the vulnerability of the finger print technology. And we might have a winner. A group by the name Chaos Computer club claims that they have cracked the system and have put up a video on YouTube showing how they did it. In the video, the club shows how they successfully hacked an iPad by using an image of a finger print embossed in latex. The authenticity if the video is still unconfirmed but it is looking very likely that finger print technology might be vulnerable.
Of course all technology is vulnerable at some point. There is no fool proof technology. That is why it is important that when dealing with the internet, experts recommend that you have a line of defense to keep you a step ahead of hackers and snooping eyes. A good way to stay ahead is by getting a VPN service from a provider like HideMyAss (read full review).