The new Face ID security feature on the iPhone X is the new buzz in the smartphone market. But, geeks around the world are skeptical about the new biometric unlock feature and don’t consider it to be as safe as Apple has made it sound like.
Apple’s Face ID scans the user’s face with an infrared camera, which allows only one person to unlock the device using this feature.
Founder and CEO of Yoke Remote, Keith Krimbel, had emailed Apple software chief Craig Federighi asking how the software will keep the phone safe in case a thief snatches it, points it towards the user’s face and runs away after the Face ID does its job.
Federighi addressed this query by tweeting, “There are two mitigations: if you don’t stare at the phone, it won’t unlock. Also, if you grip the buttons on both sides of the phone when you hand it over, it will temporarily disable Face ID.”
Krimbel also raised concern over the situation where the user is wearing sunglasses to which Federighi responded saying that most sunglasses will not interfere with the biometric scan.
He said, “Most sunglasses let through enough IR light that Face ID can see your eyes even when the glasses appear to be opaque.”
If you don’t stare at the phone, it won’t unlock.
— Craig Federighi, Apple software chief.
Federighi also clarified the on-stage blooper during the Face ID demonstration. The iPhone X prompted him for a password because it had accidentally been tried to unlock by an unauthorized face right before the device was put on stage.
The new security feature comprises four key components, including an infrared camera, a flood illuminator, a dot projector, and the front camera. The Face ID generates a 3D map of the user’s face and compares the result with the mathematical model of the stored face. The process is powered by the state-of-the-art A11 bionic processor.