iPhone X How to hack the new iPhone’s Face ID feature

It's not easy at all, but it's possible.

  • Published:
The iPhone X has Apple's TrueDepth front-facing camera system. It's used for facial recognition and enhanced augmented-reality features like animoji and better Snapchat lenses. play

The iPhone X has Apple's TrueDepth front-facing camera system. It's used for facial recognition and enhanced augmented-reality features like animoji and better Snapchat lenses.

(Hollis Johnson)
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Some Security Researchers at Bkav have hacked the iPhone X's Face ID feature.

Phone security is like a prison; there’ll always be a Scoffield to find a way out. Our Scoffields this time are the Security Researchers at Bkav, who have reportedly hacked iPhone X’s Face ID feature with no code or software.

Apple on the other hand, is trying hard to tell us that the Face ID is more secure than Touch ID even though people are saying they’re tricking the technology, like these brothers. They say they worked with mask makers and Hollywood makeup artists to make sure this actually worked.

But at the very least, Apple is admitting it’s not hackproof, but the chances are very very slim. 

Let’s walk you through this hack:

  1. First, you’ll need to be as smart as the team of Security researchers at Bkav. 

  2. Now, make a 3D print of the face of the face registered on the phone you’d like to open. 

  3. Make a print of the eyes and lips too. 

 

It took Bkav one week to build, and about $150, but they did it anyway. 

The Security researchers said:

“You can try it out with your own iPhone X, the phone shall recognize you even when you cover a half of your face. It means the recognition mechanism is not as strict as you think, Apple seems to rely too much on Face ID’s AI. We just need a half face to create the mask. It was even simpler than we ourselves had thought.”

Other people, like WIRED magazine, have tried hacking the Face ID with 3D prints but have failed. 

Who’s most at risk?

Mostly the rich and famous, considering they are the most photographed people, from every possible angle. That’s because superskilled craftsman can craft a face out of photos from different angles. 

If you’re not super famous, you have nothing to worry about. 

Also, the silicon nose needs to be made by hand. An initial version of the nose reportedly didn’t work and needed to be modified to deceive the iPhone X’s TrueDepth cameras and built-in AI.

Look, unless you’re holding the secrets to the afterlife, or the exact figure Nigerian senators earn, the work that will go into hacking your phone won’t be too valuable for the hackers. Nevertheless, if you don’t use the Face ID as your security, then you can settle for a strong 6-digit password. 

I guess we’ll have to wait for a future where our tool is from the most secure place, the mind.

In the end, the iPhone X is high up on the list of best smartphones. Ever.

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