Peace sign selfies could let hackers copy your fingerprints

Peace sign selfies could let hackers copy your fingerprints

Most people are aware they shouldn’t post sensitive and personally identifying information on social media, such as a letter with their address or a plane ticket, as they could be used by scammers. And they most certainly wouldn’t publicly share their passwords.

Sharing pictures, however, is something everyone is comfortable with. But research has revealed that these can also be used to glean telling information. Posing for a picture while holding your hands up in a peace sign could pose a security threat, with hackers able to recreate prints that are the key to phones, computers and tablets.

Researchers at Japan’s National Institute of Informatics (NII) have found that fingerprints can be easily recreated from photos taken up to three metres away without the need for advanced technology. So long as the picture is clear and well-lit, prints can be mimicked.

“Just by casually making a peace sign in front of a camera, fingerprints can become widely available,” Professor Isao Echizen, a security and digital media researcher at the NII, told local paper Sankei Shimbun.

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