“A group of German hackers claimed to have cracked the iPhone fingerprint scanner on Sunday, just two days after Apple Inc launched the technology that it promises will better protect devices from criminals and snoopers seeking access,” Jim Finkle reports for Reuters. “If the claim is verified, it will be embarrassing for Apple which is betting on the scanner to set its smartphone apart from new models of Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and others running the Android operating system of Google Inc.”

“Two prominent iPhone security experts told Reuters that they believed the German group, known as the Chaos Computing Club, or CCC, had succeeded in defeating Apple’s Touch ID, though they had not personally replicated the work,” Finkle reports. “One of them, Charlie Miller, co-author of the iOS Hacker’s Handbook, described the work as ‘a complete break’ of Touch ID security. ‘It certainly opens up a new possibility for attackers.’”

“CCC, one the world’s largest and most respected hacking groups, posted a video on its website that appeared to show somebody accessing an iPhone 5S with a fabricated print. The site described how members of its biometrics team had cracked the new fingerprint reader, one of the few major high-tech features added to the latest version of the iPhone,” Finkle reports. “The group said they targeted Touch ID to knock down reports about its ‘marvels,’ which suggested it would be difficult to crack.”

“The group said it defeated Touch ID by photographing the fingerprint of an iPhone’s user, then printing it on to a transparent sheet, which it used to create a mold for a ‘fake finger,’” Finkle reports. “CCC said similar processes have been used to crack ‘the vast majority’ of fingerprint sensors on the market. ‘I think it’s legit,’ said Dino Dai Zovi,” another co-author of the iOS Hacker’s Handbook. ‘The CCC doesn’t fool around or over-hype, especially when they are trying to make a political point.’”

Finkle reports, “Two security experts who sponsored an impromptu competition offering cash and other prizes to the first hackers who cracked the iPhone said they had reviewed the information posted on the CCC website, but wanted more documentation.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews readers too numerous to mention individually for the heads up.]

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