The Samsung Galaxy S8 can be unlocked using a piece of paper, a piece of contact lens and some basic photography skills. Hackers have found a way to bypass the popular flagship smartphone's iris scanner, one of its security features.
Linus Neumann and his team of researchers from the Chaos Computer Club or CCC first took a photo of the subject using a digital camera. They used the camera's night mode and shot the owner of the phone from medium range. The hackers then cropped the photo to get a life-sized printout of the subject's eye. A contact lens was then placed on the eye. Motherboard reported that the contact lens was probably used to give depth to the photo. The team then used the combination of paper, photo and contact lens to successfully bypass the iris scanner and unlock the Galaxy S8.
BGR pointed out that the team didn't even need to use a high-quality photo to bypass the iris scanner. Add the fact that the photo was taken from medium range distance suggests that the security feature is not really taking minute details into consideration.
Samsung boasts that its iris scanner is "one of the safest ways to keep your phone locked and the contents private." The Korean tech giant also said on its website that the patterns in the irises are unique so it is impossible to copy them. The hackers just proved Samsung wrong.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 got some negative feedback after someone was able to unlock the device using a photograph. A photo of the Galaxy S8's owner's face was used to unlock the handset via its facial recognition feature. The video of the hack immediately drew concerns that the security feature is not that secure.
Now that it just been discovered that the Galaxy S8 can be unlocked using both facial recognition and iris scanner, some users may now be wondering how to stay safe and secure. For something so sophisticated, it is surprising to know that iris scanners and face recognition technology can easily be fooled by something as simple as a photo printed on a piece of paper.