Apple fingerprint tool on iPhone 5S raises 'substantial privacy questions'
Senior US senator address open letter to Apple over privacy concerns for users
A US senator has voiced his concerns over the security of fingerprint recognition technology used in Apple's new iPhone 5S, arguing that the tool raises "substantial privacy questions".
In an open letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook, Senator Al Franken addressed a series of questions to the company regarding security issues with Apple Touch ID.
The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on privacy, technology and the law argues that if a hacker were to get hold of a finger print, they can use it to impersonate the owner's identity for the rest of their life.
In his letter, he writes: "Passwords are secret and dynamic; fingerprints are public and permanent".
"If someone hacks your password, you can change it as many times as you want. You can't change your fingerprints."
Among the questions Mr Franken posed to Apple were questions surrounding who would have access to finger print data. He asked:
- Would it be possible to extract fingerprint data from an iPhone?
- What legal status would the finger print have?
- How well would the finger print data be protected?
- Could Apple assure its users that it would never share their finger print data or finger print files with any commercial third party?
- Do they believe users have a reasonable expectation of privacy in finger print data they provide to Touch ID?
A reward for the first person who can successfully hack Apple's Touch ID is also being crowdsourced on the site istouchidhackedyet.com
The online 'pot' currently contains $15,000, several bottles of whisky and an erotic book.
Individuals involved say that there is no malevolent intent in the competition. Arturas Rosenbacher, founding partner of I/O Capital - a venture capital firm that donated $10,000 to the competition - said that the site would help the hacking community find bugs that Apple might have missed.
Mr Franken has asked Apple's to reply within one month of receiving the letter. They have yet to respond.
Life & Style blogs
Hundreds of Scottish women to launch damages claims against makers of the vaginal mesh implants which have left them in constant pain and even unable to have sex
25 years of the World Wide Web: Tim Berners-Lee explains how it all began
The Web is 25: Let's look at some baby photos of your favourite websites
Apple's iOS 7.1: How to get iPhone update, and what to do once you've got it
Is the secret to liberation from the cares of this world a two-word curse?
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Katie Hopkins continues campaign to become Britain's most hated talking head with poorly timed Bob Crow tweet
Exclusive: Impact of immigrants on British workers ‘negligible’
No EU referendum under Labour: Ed Miliband to reveal that vote on membership is ‘unlikely’ in next Parliament if party wins power
Grace Dent: Who cares if she spells it Barraco Barner? Gemma Worrall is more employable than some bookish arts graduate
Ukraine crisis: Russia pledges to 'retaliate against sanctions' as Ukrainian president says Crimea vote will not be recognised
- 1 Fracking is turning the US into a bigger oil producer than Saudi Arabia
- 2 Hells of residence: Inside Macedonia's horrifying student accommodation - where the walls are green and the food is black
- 3 First Kiss video: Filmmaker gets 20 strangers to make out on YouTube with awkward results
- 4 Grace Dent: Who cares if she spells it Barraco Barner? Gemma Worrall is more employable than some bookish arts graduate
- 5 Rampaging elephant smashes up house but then 'saves crying baby trapped under debris'
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£20,000 to £25,000: IT Connections Ltd: Graduate C / C++ Developer / Electroni...
£25,000 to £35,000: IT Connections Ltd: C / C++ Software Engineer / Windows / ...
£50,000 to £60,000: IT Connections Ltd: C++ / Java / Senior Software Developer...
£10 - £13 per hour: Pro-Recruitment Group: ***Temporary Purchase Ledger Clerk ...