News Analysis 4: Fingerprints

My friends have told me before about apple creating a new home key button that requires your fingerprint. At first, I thought that this was pretty cool, being able to open your phone with just your fingerprint, and preventing others from opening it without your permission. The thing is, I’ve haven’t really taken a deeper look into what consequences this may have. “A senior US senator believes the fingerprint recognition technology featured in Apple’s new iPhone 5S raises ‘substantial privacy questions.’” Some of my friends told me that the US government is working with Apple to try to obtain fingerprint scans to store into their database. I think that they’re trying to either collect everyone’s fingerprints, or just have it just in case something important pops up. The thing is, people are worried that their fingerprints might get into the wrong hands. People are questioning the safety and privacy of our iPhones. The following questions have to be assessed by the apple boss, Tim Cook:

  • “Whether the fingerprint data stored locally on the mobile phone chip in encrypted form could ever be stolen and converted into digital or visual form that would be usable by hackers or fraudsters”
  • “Whether the iPhone 5S transmits any diagnostic information about the Touch ID system back to Apple or any third parties”
  • “How well customer fingerprint data will be protected and kept private”
  • “The exact legal status of such fingerprint data.”

There are some hackers out there who want to hack into the Apple’s database to retrieve all of the fingerprint scans. “The website, set up by Nick DePetrillo and Robert Graham, lists a number of people offering rewards – including one for $10,000 from IO Capital, a venture capital company – ‘to the first person who can reliably and repeatedly break into an iPhone 5S by lifting prints (like from a beer mug).’” After finding out about all of the consequences that may come with the iPhone 5’s fingerprint system, I do not want to buy one for myself. It’s completely unsafe, and you could get into a lot of trouble just by scanning your fingerprint onto the iPhone. Honestly, I think that Apple might get into a lot of trouble if they were actually working with the US government, they’d be violating people’s privacy, so people can sue them. I like Apple, they make a lot of cool new gadgets for me to use, but I feel that this invention has lost them the trust and loyalty of many customers just like myself.



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