8 Things You Need to Know Before Using iPhone X’s Face ID

Face ID

Smartphones are a convenient tool for employees to use, especially when they travel for business. They can use the devices to check their emails, call customers, and even pay for trip expenses. Smartphones’ portability, though, makes them prone to loss or theft. A smartphone can easily fall out of a pocket or be stolen out of a handbag. For this reason, it is important to lock smartphones and use a secure authentication method to unlock them.

In iPhone X, Apple has replaced Touch ID with a new authentication method called Face ID. Both Touch ID and Face ID use biometric authentication, which means they rely on individuals’ unique biological features to verify that they are who they claim to be. With Face ID, an individual’s facial features are used for verification, whereas Touch ID uses individuals’ fingerprints. Apple maintains that Face ID is not only more convenient but also more secure to use than Touch ID. However, security experts and even Apple recognize that Face ID’s security is not infallible.

Here are eight things you need to know about Face ID so that you can decide whether you and your employees should use it to unlock company-provided iPhones:

1. Face ID Is More Advanced Than Its Predecessors

Apple is not the first company to use facial recognition for authentication. Other companies have developed facial recognition systems. More often than not, people have demonstrated how these systems can be fooled. For example, a web developer showed how he used 2-D selfies to fool the facial recognition system in Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8. Similarly, security researchers from the University of North Carolina created digital 3-D facial models from publicly available Facebook photos and displayed them with mobile virtual reality technology to defeat four facial recognition systems.

Apple’s Face ID uses more advanced technologies than its predecessors, though. For instance, its TrueDepth camera projects and reads more than 30,000 infrared dots to create a depth map and a 2-D infrared image of the face, so Face ID cannot be fooled by pictures. The infrared technology also allows Face ID to work when you are indoors, outdoors, or even in total darkness.

2. Face ID Learns More about Your Face Each Time You Use It

Every time you use Face ID, it uses neural networks to learn more about your face. As a result, it will recognize you even if you wear glasses instead of your usual contacts or put on a hat. It also updates your facial details as you age.

3. People Cannot Use Face ID to Open Your iPhone When You Are Sleeping

You must have your eyes open and be looking at your smartphone for Face ID to work. This prevents someone from opening the device by pointing the phone at your face while you are sleeping.

4. Do Not Use Face ID If You Have an Evil Identical Twin

According to Apple, the odds that another person’s face will unlock your device is one in a million. Apple admits, though, that the odds are greater for identical twins and siblings who look alike. A test by a Wall Street Journal tech columnist showed that identical triplets did fool Face ID, while paternal twins did not. So, if you have an evil identical twin (or you simply do not want them to be able to access your phone), use a passcode rather than Face ID for authentication.

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About The Author

Jean Burgess, Marketing Manager

Jean Burgess, Marketing Manager

Jean Burgess is Marketing Manager for NoWorriesIT, where she is continually surrounded by techno-speak and computer gear throughout the day. From Jean's desire to understand this alien world of Cloud Computing, Remote Monitoring and Management, Data Backup and Disaster Recovery, and Network Security sprang this blog -Thoughts From A Wannabe Techno Geek. Her goal: to be a liaison between the knowledgeable NoWorriesIT system engineers and the small business reader in an entertaining and informative manner.

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