Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner has been hacked, PayPal users at risk

Samsung Galaxy S5 review front macro home button

When we reviewed the Samsung Galaxy S5, we thought the fingerprint scanner worked well enough, though we didn’t have too much fun swiping downward. Still, we thought it was great that the fingerprint scanner lets you make payments through PayPal. However, a recent hack showed that the GS5’s biometric scanner has the same problem as the iPhone 5S: it’s hackable.

Security Research Labs (SRLabs) recently uploaded a YouTube video, showing that the fingerprint scanner on the Galaxy S5 can be easily spoofed. By using a lifted fingerprint, it was able to make a wood glue spoof made from a mold that the firm also used to trick the iPhone 5S’ fingerprint scanner, Touch ID.

However, there are differences in how both fingerprint scanners are utilized. Touch ID requires you to enter your password one time before you can use your fingerprint as a way to unlock the phone. In addition, every time you reboot the iPhone 5S, you must enter your password once. There are no such steps with the Galaxy S5, even after rebooting the phone.

What’s equally alarming is, even after a reboot, you don’t need a password to use PayPal and make any payments through the service. So long as the app was configured to allow for fingerprint authentication, you’re good to go.

You can watch how SRLabs accomplished the hack below.

Mobile

Samsung commits to improving the Galaxy S10’s ultrasonic fingerprint sensor

The Galaxy S10 has a new ultrasonic fingerprint sensor under the screen, and while it's better than other examples, people have experienced problems. Samsung has committed to making further accuracy improvements over time.
Mobile

How to keep using your iPhone if you’ve broken your Home button

Breaking your iPhone's screen is one thing, but breaking the Home button can be even worse, especially if it means you just can't use your phone. Here's how you can use an iPhone with a broken Home button.
Podcasts

Law Enforcement and Technology: What is the right balance?

Mobile technology is finally advancing out of the standard form we've become used to. The Samsung Galaxy Fold is one example of further innovation and possibly a redesign of how we communicate and interact with our devices. Will 5G…
Mobile

Protect your titan with the best Samsung Galaxy Note 9 screen protectors

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is one of 2018's best phones. But what if you break the screen? Thankfully, we've got all the best Samsung Galaxy Note 9 screen protectors designed to keep that 6.4-inch screen safe.
Mobile

iPad Air vs. iPad Mini: Which new tablet from Apple is best for you?

Apple has unveiled two new iPad models, including a new iPad Air and a new iPad Mini. Both devices have a lot to offer. But which iPad is right for your needs? We put the iPad Air and iPad Mini to the test to find out.
Deals

The best Apple AirPods alternatives for Android, Windows, and iOS devices

Apple AirPods, nice as they are, aren't the only game in town. Other makers are offering their own truly wireless earbuds, and if you're looking to buy a pair of high-end in-ear headphones, we've got the best AirPod alternatives on the…
Mobile

Even older Apple Watches could be effective at spotting heart conditions

The Apple Watch Series 4 is known for detecting heart conditions like atrial fibrillation thanks to having an electrocardiograph feature. It turns out that older Apple Watches could be effective at tracking AFib, too.
Mobile

The Black Shark 2’s Ludicrous Mode promises the smoothest mobile gaming

Xiaomi-backed Black Shark has a follow-up to last year's Black Shark gaming phone, complete with high specs and a low price. Here's everything we know about the Black Shark 2 gaming phone.
Deals

Need a new tablet? Here are the best iPad deals for March 2019

In the wide world of tablets, Apple is still the king. If you're on team Apple and just can't live without iOS, we've curated an up-to-date list of all of the best iPad deals currently available for March 2018.
Deals

Amazon drops price on Apple Watch Series 4 with a rare deal

Since Apple first unveiled the Series 4, the price for one has pretty much held fast. This has finally started to change with a nice little $15 discount on Amazon. If you've been wanting the newest Apple Watch, now is a great time.
Computing

Sending SMS messages from your PC is easier than you might think

Texting is a fact of life, but what to do when you're in the middle of something on your laptop or just don't have your phone handy? Here's how to send a text message from a computer, whether you prefer to use an email client or Windows 10.
Mobile

Google's midrange Pixels might be called the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL

The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are considered to be two of the best Android smartphones, but it looks like Google could be prepping a midrange line. Say hello to the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL.
Gaming

Angry Birds AR: Isle of Pigs brings 3D demolition into your living room

Angry Birds is releasing its next entry in the spring of 2019 - with a new spin. Bringing 3D environments and destruction, Angry Birds AR: Isle of Pigs uses augmented reality to add a new dimension to a classic series.
Mobile

Whether by the pool or the sea, make a splash with the best waterproof phones

Whether you're looking for a phone you can use in the bath, or you just want that extra peace of mind, waterproof phones are here and they're amazing. Check out our selection of the best ones you can buy.