Dave Pinwell

Dave Pinwell

Dave Pinwell is a prolific blogger and IT enthusiast and has kindly allowed us to reproduce his popular weekly IT Talk column first published in the Solihull News. Dave is also CEO of Colebridge Trust and SUSTAiN which play a key role in providing strategic support to Solihull’s Voluntary & Community sector. Dave has extensive experience in the IT sector, with roles including IT Director with Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe Ltd.
Tech News 28th April 2017 681

Fingerprint May Not Be Password To Secure Future

You would have thought that fingerprint security, as supplied with a number of current smartphone models, was a pretty good option for keeping your information locked away from prying eyes and your accounts safe from abuse.

Recent research is casting a long shadow of doubt on that, though.

A report published this week by boffins at New York and Michigan State Universities suggests that it is possible to create digital fingerprints, composed of features commonly found in human prints, and use these to scam a fingerprint scanner.

In their tests, these artificial prints were able to fool the software up to 65 per cent of the time.

They say that this frequency would be reduced outside ‘laboratory conditions’ but that would still result in an inadequate level of defence. This comes just three months after specialists in a team at Japan’s National Institute of Informatics proved that taking a picture of a person making a two fingered peace sign was sufficient to capture their fingerprint to a high enough quality to subsequently use it to hack into their phone.

Then, of course, there are the lo-tech approaches which could be deployed, such as taking a few inches of adhesive tape to the beer glass someone has just finished with, to turn a pint into a print.

If a phone is stolen what are the chances that the print which will unlock it is on its glass screen? Specialist commentators on the net are starting to advise users to spurn fingerprint recognition in favour of good, old-fashioned passwords, despite their limitations. At least when a password is breached, you can change it. A fingerprint if forever!

Dave Pinwell

Dave Pinwell is a prolific blogger and IT enthusiast and has kindly allowed us to reproduce his popular weekly IT Talk column first published in the Solihull News. Dave is also CEO of Colebridge Trust and SUSTAiN which play a key role in providing strategic support to Solihull’s Voluntary & Community sector. Dave has extensive experience in the IT sector, with roles including IT Director with Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe Ltd.

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