It was recently discovered that Samsung Galaxy S10, S10+, Note 10 and Note 10+ phones could be unlocked with any type of fingerprint without registering due to certain screen protectors. Samsung is very prompt about curbing this issue. They said that the problem could happen specifically with screen protectors that are made of silicon because they retain fingerprints.
Samsung has announced that it will fix the issue by the end of this week. They also requested all the users with the screen protector to delete and register fingerprints again without the screen protector. The South Korean electronics giant has provided the upgrade within their country, and soon it will be available worldwide.
Once you receive the update, the notification will not disappear until you install it. The new Samsung Galaxy handsets use the latest ultrasonic scanner to scan your fingerprint, which is embedded in the display. One of the USPs of these scanners is that it can read wet or greasy fingerprints, but it seems that this feature has landed them in trouble.
In fact, a user stated that their phone unlocked when they scanned the lock with their unregistered finger. Apparently, the same was true for her husband’s thumb. It also happened when they used the same screen protector on a different S10 device. And this happened because of the textured inner surface (mainly) of silicon protectors. The inner surface misidentified the texture for fingerprint and unlocked the phone. This is why Samsung has asked its users to remove the protector and re-record your fingerprints.
The fingerprint scanner can only be fooled with certain screen protectors, and it only misidentifies the thumbprint. But still, it is a cause for concern because it is a matter of privacy and security. The new algorithms will prevent the screen protector pattern from registering, and it won’t allow contaminated data to go forward. Make sure you keep an eye out for the update notification!
Samsung stated that they take the security of their electronics very seriously and that they will keep making efforts to strengthen security and provide updates for improvement and enhance the authentication functions of biometric sensors of these handsets. Several banks have removed the fingerprint payment verification/sign-in temporarily. The Bank of China has removed the fingerprint authentication from specific Samsung Galaxy devices. Alipay’s fingerprint verification app has also halted the function of the fingerprint scan temporarily.
Several banks in the UK have Blacklisted both Samsung Galaxy S10 and Note 10 devices. Payments made from these devices are to be investigated thoroughly even after the update is rolled out to all the existing devices. We are not sure how long the update will be made available to all the S10 and Note 10 devices around the world. Still, we recommend you remove all pre-existing fingerprint biometrics and stick to password, pin, or facial recognition until the update arrives in your phones.