August 11

iPhone 5S TouchID Hacking Contest, Winner Could Win $13K

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A venture capital firm, and a group of security researchers are offering more than $13,000 cash plus other prices to the first hacker who can crack or circumvent the iPhone 5S TouchID or fingerprint security technology of Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL).

Hours prior to the official roll out of Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) new iPhone 5S on Friday, many people are excited to purchase the device at the online store or actual retail store of the company. Apple’s online store was offline around 8:30 P.M. Pacific Time as the company prepares to receive a great volume of orders starting 12 midnight.

If you are excited to purchase the iPhone 5S, hackers are definitely more excited to get hold of the device. Their main reason is to join the iPhone 5S TouchID hacking challenge (isthetouchidhackedyet) launched by a venture capital firm and a group of security researchers. The first hacker who would be able to  crack the TouchID or fingerprint sensor technology of the iPhone 5S will receive a reward of more than $13,000 in cash including books, bitcoin currency, and other prices.

Arturas Rosenbacher, founding partner of I/O Capital Partners pledged $10,000 for the competition to hack the iPhone 5S TouchID. His twitter message reads, “On behalf of @I/O Capital, we are pledging $10,000 to the #isthetouchidhackedyet, and supporting this wonderful crowdsourced campaign.”

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The report from Reuters quoted a statement from Rosenbacher emphasizing that the main objective of the campaign is to discover any potential vulnerability with iPhone 5S fingerprint technology and fix it before it becomes a problem. He said, “This will make things safer.”

Former U.S. Marine Corps cyber-intelligence analyst, David Kennedy is one of individuals preparing to the hacking contest. He said, “I am just waiting to get my hands on it to figure out how to get around it first. I’ll be up all night trying,” during the Thomson Reuters Global Markets Forum this week. Kennedy is the founder of the DerbyCon hacking conference, and the owners of TrustedSec LLC, a consulting firm.

According to Kennedy, he will evaluate the iPhone 5S to determine the best way to hack it. His options include hacking the software, which analyzes fingerprint data or opening and connecting the phone to a custom-built device that would Apple’s TouchID.

On the other hand, Charlie Miller, popular among hackers as the person who discovered major vulnerabilities in the iPhone and avoided the security measures of Apple’s app store commented that Kennedy or other smart hackers might be able to circumvent security of the TouchID in less than two weeks.

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Apple’s senior vice president of hardware engineering was confident that the technology with the TouchID is one of the most advanced hardware and software integrated in the device.

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