Scientists: Manufacturers Must Abandon Fingerprint Locks


Another cost-effective way to fool fingerprint readers used for the security of phones and computers has been found. The researchers were able to fool fingerprint scanners with a 60 percent success rate with the finger cover they produced with a three-dimensional printer. According to the researchers, it is time for manufacturers to give up fingerprint lock.

Fingerprint sensors have been in the security systems of phones and computers for almost 10 years. These fingerprint readers are the first obstacle for hackers to access physical devices.

New studies show that new technologies make tools that can surpass fingerprint readers more affordable. Researchers from Cisco Talos, working on fingerprint readers, managed to overcome fingerprint locks with the 3D printer they created with a budget of under $ 2,000.

Craig Williams, a Cisco Talos researcher, says there is no need for large sums of money to circumvent fingerprint readers. Williams says that with 3D printers becoming affordable enough for home use, now everyone can do something that can surpass fingerprint readers. Williams underlines the need for knowledge and knowledge with the 3D printer to do this at home.

3D printers are now used to fool fingerprint scanners
The researchers used three different scenarios in the first place to create a product that could circumvent fingerprints with 3D printers. The first scenario was to obtain a pattern of the fingerprint to be used. The second scenario was to obtain fingerprints from the sensor data. The third scenario was to obtain fingerprints from places such as bottles with fingerprints.

The researchers used an ultraviolet 3D printer that cured the resin through UV light to produce the fingerprints they obtained with three different scenarios as a finger cover. Then they tried materials like silicone to print. Surprisingly, prints using fabric glue were the most successful.

The prints made to fool the fingerprint readers were made in the form of a finger cover for the sensors to perceive the print as a finger. In this way, any wearer of this cover can be overprinted by the fingerprint owner’s device.

No relationship between the price of the device and the security of the fingerprint reader
Experiments of the researchers on fingerprint sensors led to interesting results. The first result is that high-priced devices did not provide more protection than relatively cheap devices.

The researchers failed when they tried to trick the fingerprint reader of A70, which is one of Samsung’s mid-range phones, with a finger cover. However, the fingerprint sensor of S10, one of Samsung’s old flagships, was opened with the fingerprint on the case.

Similarly, the fingerprint protection of Windows 10 could not be opened with the finger case. However, the TouchID of MacBook Pro was opened by accepting the fingerprint when using the finger case. In fact, Apple implements additional measures to prevent MacBook Pros from opening with such ‘fake’ fingerprints, and it limits the number of fingerprint attempts to 5. Apple’s security measure works in a real hacking attempt, as researchers’ fake fingerprint tests usually take longer than 5 attempts. In this research, researchers were able to experiment more because they knew other passwords of MacBook Pro.

Fingerprint readers are supported with additional measures
Researchers from Cisco Talos shared their results with device manufacturers. However, device manufacturers said these are known vulnerabilities. Aware of the vulnerability of fingerprint readers, manufacturers have developed additional applications to address these vulnerabilities.

Lukasz Olejnik, an independent cyber security researcher and consultant, says fingerprint locks on used phones are one of the easiest security measures to overcome. Olejnik adds that using the fingerprint lock is better than not taking any security measures. Olejnik also states that a strong password is much more secure against the fingerprint lock.

Craig Williams, one of the researchers, says that most companies are able to get a fingerprint sleeve for the devices. Williams said that 3D printers similar to those they used in a few years could be at home with more common and better technologies, so technology manufacturers should gradually give up fingerprint readers.


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