Opinion: Face ID is a better authentication system. Even in the face of a pandemic
Longread on the naturalness of the iPhone authentication system.
We have presented how an iPhone without a “monobrow” may look like.
Famous insider Min-Chi Kuo said that in 2022 the iPhone will lose its “monobrow”. Instead, the company will go for a hole display similar to what is used in today’s smartphones from Samsung, Xiaomi, realme and the like.
Min-Chi Kuo: iPhone SE Plus won’t be here, iPhone 14 will lose its monobrow, and a foldable iPhone will be released in 2023
The news got people excited. The key thought was that Apple would finally do away with that awful notch with outdated Face ID technology. I was discouraged, to say the least: That is to say, one of the most sophisticated user identification technologies is obsolete?
Okay, let’s assume this is indeed true: Face ID is obsolete. But what’s being offered instead? It turns out that most users are talking about the in-screen fingerprint scanner.
After that, I’m even more discouraged: the fingerprint scanner couldn’t be more perfect than Face ID. No way.
But first, it’s worth explaining how all authentication technologies work.
Face ID on the iPhone can be fooled with glasses and duct tape (not blue)
At the Black Hat 2019 conference in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, security experts demonstrated how the Face ID facial unlock system used in Apple smartphones can be bypassed quite easily, using a kind of biometric Achilles’ heel. It turns out that circumventing the Face ID sensors is not difficult: you just have to wear regular glasses with large squares of black duct tape glued over the lenses and small squares of white duct tape glued inside them.
“An Achilles’ heel was found in the way Face ID works, according to ThreatPost.
As the experts found out, Attention Detection does not scan the eye area when the user is in front of the smartphone wearing glasses.
A way around Face ID is shown on this slide:
Large black squares of duct tape over the glass mimic the user’s eyes, while small white pieces of duct tape over the black ones act as pupils.
In this way, Apple’s biometric authentication system is being misled.
For this system gives the impression that the user of the device is awake and looking directly into the camera.
Of course, in a real situation it is quite problematic to perform such an attack, which was acknowledged by researchers at the Black Hat 2019 conference, because to exploit this vulnerability, a number of such conditions need to be met:
- Have your glasses on hand (they should not be sunglasses), two colors of duct tape and scissors;
- There must be physical access to the smartphone;
- A sleeping or immobile user who won’t notice they’re wearing glasses.
After all, any revolutionary method of protecting personal data, even a near-perfect one, can sometimes be circumvented by the simplest things at hand.
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vag, That’s the point of five fingers, so that one person can unlock the smartphone with different fingers. Or with your left hand, or with your right hand, or on the table. it’s easier to poke with your index finger, not with your thumb. And the person’s face is one. It doesn’t need to have five options for the different ways you lay your phone in your hand or on the table.
How to set up a Face ID mask
Go to Settings. Face ID and passcode.
Reset Face ID, and then tap Face ID Setup to reconfigure it.
Fold the mask in half and put it on one half of the face. For Face ID to recognize your face, it’s best not to cover more than half of your nose and mouth.
If you see a message that your face is not detected, move your mask, freeing up most of your nose and mouth.
Scan the face half-covered with the mask.
When the scan is finished, click on Alternate Appearance.
Put a folded mask on the opposite side of your face and repeat the scanning procedure.
When both faces are added, try unlocking the smartphone without the mask and in it. If the iPhone can’t recognize you, do the whole procedure again.
Passwords in iPhone
Not too long ago I found a notification in my email about a suspicious login attempt from somewhere in Vietnam. Apparently, Vietnamese hackers want to read my advertising messages from AliExpress. Well, it’s not worth playing with fate. I immediately changed my password in my account to the suggested iPhone.
The system detects weak passwords and offers to change them
To avoid finding yourself in this situation, I highly recommend checking Passwords in iOS from time to time: there’s a cool “Security Recommendations” feature that identifies stolen passwords from sites and apps you use on your iPhone. The system prompts you to change them right on the spot, and also gives you a list of other recommendations, such as repeated passwords or those that are easy to guess.
How to enable the app lock by Touch ID or Face ID
On the Automation tab, select Create automation for yourself.
Select the condition. Application.
Check the option Open and specify the app in which we will enable the lock.
Select the action. Start timer for 1 second.
Be sure to turn off the Ask before start switch.
Save the automation, and in the Clock app, set the Timer when finished action to Stop.
Now, when you run the specified program, the automation will trigger and set the timer for one second. When the timer is triggered, you will lock the screen of your iPhone. This way a stranger can’t use the app and will get a locked gadget when they try to run it.
The owner of the smartphone will simply authorize using Face ID or Touch ID and continue to use the gadget.
How to train an iPhone with Face ID to recognize you?
First we need to reset the already existing scanned face:
- “Settings” → “Face ID and password code” → “Reset Face ID”;
- After resetting, choose “Face ID Setup” and scan with the mask on your face folded in half. It is very important that half of the face is open;
- After we have been scanned once, we change the position of the mask: open the second half of the face and cover the folded mask of the first;
- Repeat the above for a second time, setting up “Alternate Appearance.
That’s it, Face ID is set up and now recognizes you in a medical mask. True, for me the unlock did not always work: sometimes the mask had to be lowered a little, so that the eyes were fully open and the nose was visible.
Implementing FaceID with Keras
As for all machine learning projects, the first thing we need is data. Creating your own dataset will require time and the cooperation of many people, so it can be difficult. There is a website with an RGB-D face dataset. It consists of a series of RGB-D photos of people standing in different poses and making different facial expressions, as would happen with an iPhone X. To see the final implementation, here’s a link to GitHub.
A convolutional network based on the SqueezeNet architecture is created. The network takes both RGBD images of pairs of faces and 4-channel images as input, and outputs the differences between the two attachments. The network is trained with a significant loss that minimizes the difference between images of the same person and maximizes the difference between images of different faces.
Once trained, the network is able to convert faces into 128-dimensional arrays, so that pictures of the same person are grouped together. This means that in order to unlock the device, the neural network simply calculates the difference between the picture that is required at the time of unlocking and the images stored during the registration phase. If the difference fits a certain value, the device is unlocked.
The t-SNE algorithm is used. Each color corresponds to a different person: as you can see, the network has learned to group these photos quite tightly. An interesting graph also appears when using the PCA algorithm to reduce the dimensionality of the data.
Unlocking the iPhone in the mask: which support
Face ID is the same in all iPhone models except the 13. At least Apple hasn’t said anything about the changes
If you’re not strong on release years, here’s a complete list of iPhones that support unlocking in disguise:
- iPhone 12
- iPhone 12 mini
- iPhone 12 Pro
- iPhone 13
- iPhone 13 mini
- iPhone 13 Pro
- iPhone 13 Pro Max
Apple just may not have had time to add masked recognition to the firmware of earlier iPhone models, but was going to do so in future iOS builds. However, common sense tells me that this will not happen. It’s common for Apple to only add new features to new iPhones and deprive them of older devices.
I even know how they’ll explain it in Cupertino. It’s highly likely that marketers, who will have to justify themselves for this mishap, will be hammering on the underperforming hardware of older iPhone models. Allegedly the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 have more powerful iron, so they’re able to unlock the lock in the mask, but the others are not.
Apple has changed the terms of the iPhone 12 repair. Face ID, rear glass and “motherboard” can now be changed
Whether it’s true, I can’t judge. But given that Apple already offers unlocking in disguise with the Apple Watch, it all looks marketing-wise. Owners of new iPhones. just like that. will be allowed to use Face ID in the mask just like that. And those who own older models and haven’t been able to get a cent out of them for a long time are welcome to buy an Apple Watch. This is the only way out for you.
Obviously, this is very ugly on Apple’s part. Even if in fact the hardware of older iPhone models is not able to provide face recognition in the mask, this limitation looks like a preconceived marketing ploy. Is it really so, of course, no one can tell us. But once again Apple has shown itself to be innovative, but also greedy and petty.