Article Lead Image

Apple TouchID leaves your iPhone 5S vulnerable to cat selfies

Snapcat is becoming a reality.


Michelle Jaworski

Internet Culture

Posted on Sep 19, 2013   Updated on Jun 1, 2021, 6:04 am CDT

The iPhone 5S isn’t set to come out until Friday morning, but the Touch ID, one of the newest iPhone 5S features which will allow you to use a fingerprint to unlock your iPhone instead of swiping the screen or typing in a password, is creating buzz among supporters and critics alike.

A number of hackers are already crowdsourcing a reward for the first person to find a way to break into iPhone 5S with a lifted print, but TechCrunch found an even better lifehack of sorts: The iPhone 5S is not restricted to humans.

The iPhone 5S allows you to register up to five Touch ID profiles, so TechCrunch’s Darrell Etherington used one of them to test a colleague’s theory of whether a cat would be able to open up the iPhone with its paw print.

Now it’s even easier for your cat to take selfies.

The possibility of your cat unlocking an iPhone whenever it pleases, however, seems less likely. With trial and error, the cat was able to unlock the phone but only when the paw was positioned a certain way on the sensor. Cats have their own set of “fingerprints,” just like humans.

“It seemed like there wasn’t as much tolerance, like if the paw were at a different angle than when the cat first registered,” Etherington told ABC News.

Etherington also discovered that he could also unlock his iPhone with his palm and different parts of his arm, but like with the cat, it wasn’t as easy to consistently unlock the phone like using a fingerprint.

Most likely, your cat won’t care about this new development. You still might want to keep it away from Snapchat after a bout of catnip (or Snapcat if it ever comes to the iPhone), but on the other hand, you might have a bunch of new photos to view the next morning.

H/T NYMag | Photo via TechCrunch/YouTube

Share this article
*First Published: Sep 19, 2013, 5:35 pm CDT