Hackers Claim ‘Any’ Smartphone Fingerprint Lock Can Be Broken In 20 Minutes
Security researchers with Tencent’s X-Lab have found a way to use photographs of fingerprints in order to beat the fingerprint scanner on virtually all Android phones as well as iPhone 8 and older iPhone devices. Moreover, a demonstration of the technique at the GeekPwn 2019 conference in Shanghai showed that the attack can be carried out in as little as 20 minutes.
As part of the demonstration, the researchers asked random audience members to touch glass, then took a picture of the resulting fingerprint, and fed this image to a custom application. While the researchers did not share all the details of the attack for security reasons, the app likely used the image to create a 3D model of the fingerprint and sent this to a 3D printer, after which the researchers used the 3D model to beat the fingerprint scanner. The researchers said the hardware used to carry out the attack cost over $142.