November 17, 2017

Can iPhone X's Face ID get fooled by a face mask?

12 November 2017, 04:07 | Edward Lowe

“In conclusion Face ID on the iPhone X is not as secure as Apple has announced”

The best of iPhone X featured in Apple's new iPad

Should iPhone X owners worry about this discovery?

Apple claimed that there's a one in one million chance that a random person's face would fool Face ID and unlock the iPhone X. But we are increasingly seeing videos and reports that suggest that the advanced security feature can be breached by not just your identical twin but by a stranger who looks somewhat similar to you. It's called Face ID. Bkav claims that it understands how AI functions on the FaceID, allowing them to bypass the biometric system.

Apple said that it worked with professional mask makers and make-up artists to ensure that Face ID could not be tricked by masks.

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Bloomberg says the release of the new iPad could be delayed for the next year (2019), if Face ID remains complicated to build, the company is preferring to produce more iPhone in 2018 than to redirect some of its components to tablets.

Vice President, cyber security Bkav said: "the Mask created by combining three-dimensional printing with makeup and 2D images, in addition to cheeks on the area around the face succumbed to special treatment".

It now appears all that work has been in vain, as Vietnamese security company Bkav has demonstrated that a simple (or somewhat complex) mask is able to fool Face ID in unlocking without the user being present. These are actual masks used by the engineering team to train the neural network to protect against them in Face ID.

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Does this mean that iPhone X owners should worry? The effort of creating the flawless mask to unlock the iPhone X, in addition to having to actually steal the smartphone in the first place, requires a significant payoff that will not be achieved when the victim is a private individual.

Bkav admitted that its discovery is not a concern for regular users, but rather for public figures such as politicians and celebrities. Really hard to do the "right" mask, without a specific knowledge security.

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