BOSTON (Reuters) - A group of German hackers claimed to have cracked the iPhone fingerprint scanner on Sunday, just two days after Apple Inc launched the technology that it promises will better protect devices from criminals and snoopers seeking access.
If the claim is verified, it will be embarrassing for Apple which is betting on the scanner to set its smartphone apart from new models of Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and others running the Android operating system of Google Inc. Two prominent iPhone security experts told Reuters that they believed the German group, known as the Chaos Computing Club, or CCC, had succeeded in defeating Apple's Touch ID, though they had not personally replicated the work.
One of them, Charlie Miller, co-author of the iOS Hacker's Handbook, described the work as "a complete break" of Touch ID security. "It certainly opens up a new possibility for attackers."
Apple representatives did not respond to requests for comment.
CCC, one the world's largest and most respected hacking groups, posted a video on its website that appeared to show somebody accessing an iPhone 5S with a fabricated print. The site described how members of its biometrics team had cracked the new fingerprint reader, one of the few major high-tech features added to the latest version of the iPhone.
The group said they targeted Touch ID to knock down reports about its "marvels," which suggested it would be difficult to crack.
"Fingerprints should not be used to secure anything. You leave them everywhere, and it is far too easy to make fake fingers out of lifted prints," a hacker named Starbug was quoted as saying on the CCC's site.
Even if they did pull this off, their stated method is laborious and really expensive. It would have to be Carl Icahn's phone to be worth it. You couds buy one for less than you would pay to crack it....
First of all, I am long apple and I use and enjoy their products. I am simply open to any and all possibilities and news events. I hope this is fake too, otherwise it could be a blow to this finally turning around. I mean, if the main thrust of this excitement is partly or wholly due to the fingerprint scanner and somehow it can be breached, then it could scare off many buyers of the new iphone. The article did go on to say they will be producing a video and backup proof of how it was accomplished, so I guess time will tell. I am open for thoughts?
Unfortunately it is likely faked video. The scanner on the 5S is not optical; it scans under the surface of the skin. The fabricated print is surface. You can't trick the scanner by a surface print. The print was likely placed over a finger that was pre-registered to the phone. The phone scaned the pre-registered print and unlocked.