Sorry, kids: Apple's new Face ID isn't meant for you

Mobile								Image Source Martin Hajek

Apple was eventually forced to scrap its Touch ID fingerprint scanner for the X because it was hard to incorporate into the new design.

The iPhone X does allow third-party apps to let you sign in via Face ID, but these outside developers only receive notifications from Apple that you've been authenticated or not.

"Face ID data doesn't leave your device, and is never backed up to iCloud or anywhere else".

"There's no flawless system, not even biometric ones", he noted on September 12 at the Steve Jobs Theater.

But, if you happen to have an evil twin - or another shady family member that looks a lot like you - it might be prudent to pass on using Face ID.

Apple launched a new privacy website today to explain how it's protecting users' personal information as new technologies like facial recognition and machine learning make their way into the company's products.

Can I turn Face ID off and use my passcode?

"The probability of a false match is different for twins and siblings that look like you as well as among children under the age of 13, because their distinct facial features may not have fully developed", Apple points out. It even recommends reverting to the outdated passcode for anyone concerned about these limitations.

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This is Apple admitting a simple truth: Existing consumer biometrics aren't as secure as an alphanumeric password.

That set of numbers is then stored in the "secure enclave" inside the A11 Bionic processor (the same place where the Apple Pay data is stored).

Time to authenticate the latest bloatware with my face.

During its press conference earlier this month, Apple said Face ID will provide much better security than Touch ID, its existing home button and fingerprint sensor feature.

Importantly, for apps which now use Touch ID for authentication - such as mobile banking and more - Face ID will slot in there in its place with no coding changes required.

Face ID can recognize the user's face even the person changes their facial hair style.

That's purportedly because the 3D sensing arrangement on the iPhone X is composed of a "structured-light system, time-of-flight system and a front-facing camera", which are proving extremely tricky to get just right in the supply chain. The Secure Enclave stores three things: the infrared images and mathematical models of your face that are captured when you setup Face ID, as well as new models that are calculated and saved in the future to help improve matching over time time (more on that in a second). Numbers representing all the beams, taken together, create a mathematical expression of the unique contours of the user's face. While we should be thankful of this, it's really a bare minimum.

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