Apple is introducing a way to access the iPhone which bypasses the fingerprint scanner in times of emergencies. The update, which was spotted by Twitter users on the new iOS 11 public beta, can let you call 911 by tapping the home button quickly five times. This will bring up the option of calling the emergency services and also disable the fingerprint scanner until the pass code is entered.
To disable the scanner previously, one would have to restart the iPhone and wait a few days until it prompts to enter the passcode, try unlocking the device with unregistered fingerprints until the phone prompts users to enter a passcode. Of course, you could simply disable the feature in the settings menu.
Unlocking the phone using a fingerprint sensor has been a debatable topic. Flash Forward creator Rose Eveleth reported, that the police had approached a professor at Michigan State to create a 3D model of a murder victim's fingerprint to access his locked phone. Techniques like these can be used to access the phone and expose a user's private data.
A 6-digit pin is far more secure than Touch ID. Fingerprints can be stolen very easily, even from the screen of your smartphone.
However, this new trick can at least prevent unwanted users (or cops) from accessing your phone until a valid pass code is entered. iOS 11 is most probably going to roll out on devices next month, however, the public beta is out for users to test.
New security mechanisms, like 3D Face recognition technology, are expected to arrive with the iPhone 8.