Android 4.0's Face Unlock Feature Cannot Be Tricked
Article by George Norman
On 21 Oct 2011
Yesterday we were reporting that Google and Samsung presented the upcoming Galaxy Nexus phone that will be powered by the Android 4.0 operating system which carries the codename “Ice Cream Sandwich.” Android 4.0 comes with a revamped look, with a feature called Android Beam that uses NFC (near field communication) technology to let users easily share contacts, apps, videos, and so on, and comes with Google+ built in.

Android 4.0 also comes with a cool new feature called Face Unlock. It is a face-recognition software feature that allows you to unlock your device by simply looking into the camera. Instead of typing in passcodes or drawing patterns, you just smile into the camera and thus gain access to your device. This way you can be sure that no one else can gain access to your device.

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You see, when you set up a screen lock, others may uncover what your pin is, or what your password is, or they can find out what pattern you set up for the screen lock. With that information in their hands they can unlock your Android-powered device and gain access to the info stored on it. But since Android 4.0 has the Face Unlock feature, they won’t be able to do this.

Which raises a question: if someone were to take a photo of your face, could that someone use the photo to unlock your Android device? This is a question that we’ve been throwing around here at FindMySoft and it seems that we weren’t the only ones. Many others have expressed their concern that Face Unlock could be tricked in this manner.

Google responded to these concerns and according to the Mountain View-based search engine giant, Face Unlock cannot be tricked as easily as that. The face-recognition software feature which intelligently matches specific parts of the handset owner’s face to unlock their handset cannot be tricked by showing it a photo of the user.

The Android 4.0-powered Galaxy Nexus smartphone will become available for purchase in the US, Canada, Europe and Asia starting this November. Additional information on the device is available here.





Tags: Face Unlock, Google, Samsung, Android, Ice Cream Sandwich, Galaxy Nexus
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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