Researchers Developed Artificial Fingerprints That Can Hack Smartphones

Artificial Fingerprint
Artificial Fingerprint

Smartphones companies believed that the Fingerprint recognition is the best way to keep your mobile device secure, but not now.

New York University and Michigan State University researchers have developed fingerprints images that have to unlock smartphone devices.

The procedure for capturing a fingerprint using a sensor consists of rolling or touching with the finger onto a sensing area, which according to the physical principle in use (optical, ultrasonic, capacitive or thermal) captures the difference between valleys and ridges.

The researchers successfully generated “DeepMasterPrints” act as kind of master key of fingerprints and claim have the potential to unlock around one in three fingerprint protected smartphones.

The researchers Philip Bontrager, Aditi Roy, Julian Togelius, Nasir Memonand Arun Ross behind the study.

“Phones and many more devices don’t capture your entire fingerprint,” they told CNBC over the phone. “There’s not enough space on the device, so they capture a partial fingerprint — which is not as secure as the full image. (People assume) the device stitches images of their fingerprint together, but that’s not really what happens — it keeps sets of partial fingerprints.”

“If you store images for three of your fingers the device may keep around 30 partial fingerprints,” the researchers said. “With MasterPrints you just have to create a few — five or ten and I’m in business.”

They added that this could unlock a “reasonably large” number of phones — just under a third.

“If every fifth phone works it would be a profitable scam,” they said.

“Research in assessing vulnerabilities in a fingerprint recognition system is a constant arms race between fixing vulnerabilities and discovering new ones,” the paper said. “It is important for researchers to probe for new vulnerabilities so that loopholes can be fixed.”

“Some smartphones have the sensors on the side buttons, which are very thin — they’re convenient but less secure,” the researchers told CNBC. “Their sensors only register a quarter or so of the fingerprint’ s features.”

But this research could be a big Cyber Threat for measures the security for smartphone companies.

Also read | Intelligent Machines – How Artificial Intelligence Is Going To Revolutionise Cyber Security?

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