Published: Wed, November 29, 2017
Science | By Cecil Little

Apple iPhone X unlocked again via Face ID using a mask

Apple iPhone X unlocked again via Face ID using a mask

This time around, Bkav security researchers note that they used a 3D mask made out of stone powder along with 2D infrared printouts of eyes.

The previous mask included a 3D printer, $150-worth of parts, extensive arts and crafts skills to portray realistic features and possibly needing cooperation from the victim in order to accurately break into the iPhone X. The video also did not showcase the original Face ID enrollment process - Bkav could have easily registered the mask as the original user. Once the features are enabled, the person on the video unlocks the iPhone X with their face to show it works.

Meanwhile, Apple also demonstrates how Face ID adapts as your face evolves - whether it is due to new glasses, makeup, or hairstyle: iPhone X recognises you, even when you change your look.

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The new 3D printed Face ID-fooling mask is made from a stone powder, with 2D infrared pictures of eyes taped over the top-infrared being the technology used by Face ID to detect faces.

To show how effective this new mask is, the company reset FaceID settings and re-enrolled the face in the iPhone X, which goes on to prove that artificial twin mask can unlock the phone even when held in hand. However, with this research result, we have to raise the severity level to every casual users: "Face ID is not secure enough to be used in business transactions", he said. The iPhone X failed to tell twins apart in Mashable's tests but didn't have any problems when Business Insider tried a similar experiment.

The process, as simple as Bkav likes to make it sound, is still rather complex.

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As we all know Face ID is the only biometric authentication feature on the iPhone, because the device lacks the Touch ID and dedicated home button on the front. After a few seconds of getting the right position, you can clearly see in the video that the iPhone X is unlocked. Because the hack was so easy, Bkav strongly recommends avoiding Face ID as a means of protecting sensitive data.

We contacted Apple for comment, but knowing Cupertino's lot, it may be a while before we get a response.

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