You can fool that Galaxy! Video shows Galaxy S8's face recognition bypassed by photo

You can fool that Galaxy! Video shows Galaxy S8's face recognition bypassed by photo
Although it likely won't end up the disaster of galactic proportions that was the fiery Galaxy Note 7, the new Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus already seem to be raising some concerns. 

A new video popped up on the interwebs, showing a Galaxy S8 seemingly getting fooled by a high-res picture of the face it's supposed to scan in real-life. A person uses a Galaxy S8 to try and bypass the face recognition of another Galaxy S8, and after a few tries, he succeeds in unlocking the device and gets past the lock screen. Ouch! 

As a reminder, Samsung introduced a new face recognition security feature that uses the selfie camera to unlock the phone. Reportedly, this one was implemented because Samsung found iris scanning to be a bit lackluster in terms of speedy unlocking the device. 

However, we shouldn't mistake face recognition for the way more secure liris scanning. While both of these are aboard the S8/S8 Plus, the one demonstrated in the video below is clearly the face recognition feature, which is way less secure than either the iris or the fingerprint scanner. 

We'd take this video with a grain of salt, since the two Galaxies playing cops and robbers are most likely pre-production units that are not intended for the end-consumer and will likely score a few hotfix updates before they end up on the shelves on April 21, when Samsung is officially launching its Galaxy S8 lineup.

Yet, the question remains - will face recognition be a viable security option or merely end up as an insecure gimmick that puts your privacy at risk. We will abstain from throwing verdicts just yet, but rest assured we'll put this one to the test as soon as possible.

Related phones

Galaxy S8
  • Display 5.8" 1440 x 2960 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, Octa-core, 2350 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 3000 mAh(30h talk time)
Galaxy S8+
  • Display 6.2" 1440 x 2960 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, Octa-core, 2450 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 3500 mAh(24h 3G talk time)



1. Phonehex

Posts: 768; Member since: Feb 16, 2016

Pre release software ! and also it mentions its not secure !! For true security Iris scanner and fingerprint !!! S8 is awesome !!!

2. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

It's not due to pre-release software. Face recognition is not meant to be secure, Samsung itself said it. If you want a secure unlock that can't be fooled, use the iris scanner. If you want a no hassle and faster unlock, use face recognition. As simple as that.

41. sgodsell

Posts: 7597; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Also this video didn't mention that you can enable/disable live scanning, so users have to blink. If it's disabled, then you can use a photo to bypass and fool the scanning process. That holds true for facial recognition as well.

42. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

If you are desperately trying to enable to fool the scanner using the phone itself, why not just disable lock altogether. No need to fool anything. What I know is that out of the box, iris scanner can't be fooled by a photo. And that should be enough.

44. nctx77

Posts: 2540; Member since: Sep 03, 2013

Basically, it's the same crap we had in Android phones for years...Samsung basically took the most secure way of locking down your phone by putting it in an odd place on the back. I would have cut them some slack if they would have put it in the center like the G6.

53. omnitech

Posts: 1131; Member since: Sep 28, 2016

Lol I don't think anyone would believe that you would ever cut Samsung some slack. You would cut Apple a universe load of slack, but Samsung never.

59. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

You so worried about some minor thing. The phone is awesome and blows the G6 out the park. I saw the S8+ and S8 today at T-Mo while returning my Note 7, and those phones are awesome. I could care less where the FPS is. Everyone trying to make a big deal are all blockheads. You guys opinion o fit is pointless. Most people will just adjust and move on. The losers with no voice trying to weep like lunatic.

68. bobby84

Posts: 595; Member since: May 13, 2016

iris scanner is far more secure than a fingerprint

3. Phonehex

Posts: 768; Member since: Feb 16, 2016

So many videos already show that while you are setting up the face detection unlock feature , it lets you know that its not 100% secure. Let the final version come out. It will have improved surely !!

20. trojan_horse

Posts: 5868; Member since: May 06, 2016

I remember using face recognition in my Galaxy S4. When setting up the face unlock, it elaborates: Low security. So , it isn't a matter of non-final software.

9. mikehunta727 unregistered

"pre release software" sure, it still is, but when you put facial recognition in a device, the 1st thing engineers do is to make sure that a photo can't bypass the facial recognition, unless Samsung engineers are that incompetent and completly missed this, which I highly doubt

16. mikehunta727 unregistered

Windows Hello can distinguish between two identical twins without being fooled

36. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

Windows hello is closer to iris scanner on Samsung phones. It uses IR, not the camera. If you use IR rays, you can tell if it's a warm blooded human or a photo. S8 can't do it because the IR camera is really limited in FoV and can only get a narrow range, enough to cover eyes, but not the full face. So it uses the camera. Being a programmer who has worked on this field, there is no way you can make it resistant to photos, provided it's not a low quality one.

51. Samclark

Posts: 35; Member since: Mar 31, 2017

If you've studied anything you know the difference between S8's Iris scanner and face unlock. Iris scanner can't be bypassed by photo, it also uses the same even better technology than Windows Hello, this news is about face recognition not iris scanning.

61. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

That's exactly what I said.

73. Plutonium239

Posts: 1246; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

That is because Windows Hello only allows specific cameras developed by intel for this purpose.

72. audibot

Posts: 679; Member since: Jan 26, 2017

the face unlock has been out since galaxy s3 then they added the blink feature to prove your alive its not scanning the depth of the face just a pic

4. maherk

Posts: 7017; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

It's face recognition, what did you expect. Now if Samsung market this thing as a reliable way to secure your phone, then there will be a problem.

34. LebronJamesFanboy

Posts: 671; Member since: Mar 23, 2013

True maherk. Now we are back to the poor fingerprint scanner location. Samsung - Please make the Note 8 great. S8 just isn't impressing me enough.

5. SleeperOne

Posts: 370; Member since: Feb 25, 2017

So what's actually new about this.

11. HomerS

Posts: 419; Member since: Sep 19, 2014

The speed of unlocking via facial recognition with 0.01s , but new(ish) is only the iris scanner.

6. Cat97

Posts: 1981; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

The upside is that a thief doesn't have time to take a picture of your face before running with your phone :)) So at least in some cases, it may have some value :)

7. maherk

Posts: 7017; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

This feature is for people like me, who only locks their phones so that my kids won't play with it.

43. Mreveryphone

Posts: 1849; Member since: Apr 22, 2014


8. Panzer

Posts: 283; Member since: May 13, 2016

It was not that secure back when it was introduced in ICS on the Galaxy Nexus. Why did anyone think it would be secure now.

13. HomerS

Posts: 419; Member since: Sep 19, 2014

It can be made more secure via an update for blink detection but that takes longer and is more annoying, therefore i would prefer the less secure way but hassle free and faster option. If you need it secure use iris scann or finger scann, although u practicly leave your fingerprint everyhwre aswell.

21. trojan_horse

Posts: 5868; Member since: May 06, 2016

"They delayed it because everyone is only gonna buy the S8 and S8+. They want to ship when the hype cools down." Then it means Iris scanner is a better security than fingerprint.

10. nctx77

Posts: 2540; Member since: Sep 03, 2013

The problem is that the FPS is in an ackward spot on the back. Samsung has said themselves the iris scanner is not reliable. If the face recognition is also not reliable, why even add it? It's basically the same trash they had years ago that no on used. Making a screen larger is not innovative, building the FPS into the screen is!

37. Tyrion_Lannister unregistered

Samsung never said iris scanner is not reliable. It's super reliable and can't be fooled using a photo.

54. omnitech

Posts: 1131; Member since: Sep 28, 2016

Meh, Fingerprint sensor is no harder to reach than any other. It's just like when Apple had the power button at the top. Side is better but top isn't a big deal.

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