IPhone X Face ID tricked by researchers with 3D printed mask

Apple CEO Tim Cook holds an iPad during a presentation at Apple headquarters in Cupertino California

Apple CEO Tim Cook holds an iPad during a presentation at Apple headquarters in Cupertino California

Hackers worldwide have been racing to break into the newest iPhone's facial recognition system aka Face ID, which Apple engineers have praised as a safer security measure than the previous models' Touch ID.

During the launch of the Apple iPhone X one of the major "triumphs" of the device was highlighted as the convenience and security offered by Face ID.

The latest instance of 3D printing being used to thwart an expensive and widely implemented security feature comes courtesy of Bkav, a security firm that has used an elaborate 3D printed mask to "trick" the new iPhone X into unlocking itself.

That page says the probability of a random person unlocking another user's phone with their face was approximately 1-in-a-million, compared to 1-in-50,000 for the previously used fingerprint scanner.

Anh acknowledged that preparing the mask wasn't easy, but he said he believed the demonstration showed facial recognition as a way to authenticate users would be risky for some.

Back in 2008, the first company to flaw the technology of face recognition was Bkav who with evidence bested the security of various laptops. "Security units' competitors, commercial rivals of corporations, and even nations might benefit from our PoC", they said.

Bkav's video does not go through the steps of setting up a Face ID, and viewers are already skeptical about the alleged flaw. Not necessarily - to get the requisite material you would need a detailed scan of someone's face and not just a flat photo.

For everyone that's just purchased an iPhone X, here's a bit of potentially bad news. Apple wrote in a white paper on Face ID that it is smart enough to know when it's looking at a mask.

The firm is launching its own facial recognition technology named ZoOm Login which provides ultra-secure face authentication by matching the user via recognition algorithms and verifying 3D liveness via AI.

Describing how all that was needed was half a face image to make the mask, the company says people can try it out for themself. Without going into details, he said much of the iPhone X's functionality is "determined by software". In about a year, the iPhone X will be able to do things it can't do right now.

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