Biometrics in smartphones need more control – ex-GCHQ boss

Leala Padmanabhan reports on the BBC News website that Sir John Adye, the former head of GCHQ between 1989 and 1996, has highlighted security concerns with some biometric technology, such as fingerprint recognition used on Apple’s iPhone 6 and on other devices.

He gave as an example of the lack of clear information on what happens to an individuals biometric data when used for identity checking on a smartphone and the lack of physical supervision of such devices versus for example, the way an ATM is supervised by a bank.  Commenting on Apple’s iPhone 6 biometric fingerprint recognition he said:

“………They appear to have a good system at the moment for protecting their operating system, so it’s difficult for anyone outside to penetrate it and retrieve data from it.  But how long will that last, because the criminals … are very inventive at finding ways in, and although you can protect it in that way on the device itself, what happens if the device is lost or stolen?”