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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

the new Apple iPhone 5S .. finger print technology and how hacked ?

Will people stand in queues to buy a product [not in ration shops !!] There are basic requirements, essentials, things of utility value and more….. and there is one thing that people keep buying when they already have some and the newer is one is not required or does not add any further utility value ~ but it is fancy buying as people tend to continuously upgrade……… it is the ubiquitous ‘mobile phone’.

Interestingly, the basic model is called ‘essential’ ~ the improved versions are called ‘smart’…….. there are phones and i-phones…… the user interface is built around the device's multi-touch screen, including a virtual keyboard; it has Wi-Fi and cellular connectivity (2G, 3G, 4G, and LTE); can shoot video; take photos, play music, send and receive email, browse the web, send texts, and receive visual voicemail – provides functionality of  video games, reference works, GPS navigation, social networking, etc. -  the App Store offered more than 775,000 apps by Apple and third parties. …. That is iPhone for you, designed and marketed by Apple Inc. It runs Apple's iOS mobile operating system, known as the "iPhone OS". The first generation iPhone was released on June 29, 2007; the most recent one that is raging a storm is  iPhone 5C and iPhone 5S. There are six generations of iPhone models, each accompanied by one of the six major releases of iOS.

The resounding sales of the iPhone have been credited with reshaping the smartphone industry and helping make Apple one of the world's most valuable publicly traded companies.  A chip with 64-bit architecture; a fingerprint identity sensor; a better, faster camera ~ and  an operating system built specifically for 64 bit.  iPhone 5s is precision crafted down to the micron is what they advertise it to be ….. it claims to have beautiful aluminium housing – encasing the sleekness of metal and glass; Sapphire crystal in the Home button and more sapphire crystal protecting the iSight camera.  The iPhone 5s looks and feels unbelievably thin and light -  available in three elegant expressions: gold, silver and space grey. 

In modern day World of marketing hypes, iphone is a real hit. Apple Inc logged 9 million in sales for iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C models in their first three days on the market, the most successful iPhone launch ever. Apple shares rose more than 5 percent to $493.47 in early trading on Monday following the news. Demand for the iPhone 5s has exceeded initial supplies, and many online orders are scheduled to be shipped in the coming weeks, the company said in a statement. When Apple unveiled the iPhone 5 a year ago, it sold more than 5 million in the first three days after its launch. On the day of its launch, long lines formed outside stores in Tokyo, New York, San Francisco and other cities for Apple's new top-of-the-line iPhone 5S and the less-expensive iPhone 5C.

In searching some popular websites, it is found that new Apple iPhone 5S Price in India is Rs 52000 and less in some.  As expected, the iPhone 5S has made its way to India’s grey markets over the weekend. In Delhi, it is stated that  prices started from Rs 90,000 but have now settled down to Rs 75,000 for the 16GB variant. The few units of the gold iPhone 5S that came were seen selling for as high as Rs 115,000 and are now next to impossible to find. In Mumbai, we are hearing reports of the iPhone 5S selling for Rs 100,000. Though not high in demand right now, a few units of the iPhone 5C have also made their way to markets here. But with no real demand, these are selling for about Rs 45,000. Apple has not yet revealed the date or price for India launch.

You find people checking impatiently for messages and missed calls even when there are none…. That has become a habit.. !! ~ those smart phone users would rue the fact of entering passcode each time they see it afresh……… it is primarily a safety feature that ensures that no one else has access to your phone.  iPhone 5S claimed the novelty of futuristic Touch ID — a new fingerprint identity sensor. They claimed that ‘put your finger on the Home button, and just like that your iPhone unlocks’ ~ touted to be convenient and highly secure way to access your phone. Your fingerprint can also approve purchases from iTunes Store and the App Store, so you don’t have to enter your password ~ and some responded with having cat paws, toes and even private parts…. The apple  technology uses a scanner built into the home button of the phone to take a high-resolution image from small sections of the fingerprint from the sub-epidermal layers of the skin. Apple says "Touch ID then intelligently analyses this information with a remarkable degree of detail and precision." Users can choose to use up to five fingerprints - which can be changed - to unlock the phone and optionally pay for iTunes…

And……….. what is claimed to be a novel safety feature went for a toss within almost 48 hours……. With  someone exhibiting their way to beat the system and finding a way around.  A member of the German hacker organization Chaos Computer Club posted a video to YouTube Sunday showing one of the new iPhones being hacked with a lifted fingerprint. Despite Apple’s  tall claims about the advanced security of the Touch ID, the CCC says Apple’s sensor is just a high-resolution  version of existing technology and can be cracked with a sharp photo of the fingerprint and a laser printer.  A spokesman for the organization is quoted as stating that  speedy hack illustrates the inherent risks of using fingerprints as a security measure and urges Apple customers to return to numeric passcodes to protect their phones.

There were some fears that criminals would go the extent of cutting a finger ever……. Far-fetched it may sound though…. But the one exhibited was much simpler……..  “First you need some kind of colored powder or superglue to lift the fingerprint. Then you have to scan the fingerprint, invert it and print it with a resolution of 1200dpi or more onto a transparent sheet. … If somebody is willing to go through all of this to break into your phone, chances are you have bigger issues than fingerprint security.” It is stated that Security experts Nick DePetrillo and Robert Graham have been pooling a crowd sourced bounty for the first person to bypass the iPhone fingerprint reader and that way CCC has perhaps won an estimated $6,400, plus almost 23 bitcoins and at least nine bottles of alcohol.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.

25th Sept.2013

1 comment:

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