fingerprint

Apple showed off their newest version of the iPhone last week, displaying an assortment of coloured side plating and backs for the first time. The new tech inside it isn’t anything special to be excited about.

The new A7 processor gives it a bit of a boost, along with the upgraded camera. However, these advancements are nothing special in regards to what other companies are doing, such as Samsung.

New camera modes in the newest iPhone 5S and 5C sport off new burst mode photo taking, something the Galaxy 3 already had. These announcements on tech and spec however are not the reason for this article. It’s the other feature.

The iPhone 5 will also have a new way to unlock your screen quickly, fingerprint identification.

Now, this isn’t new technology. Laptops have been using this for awhile in unlocking computers. Even face recognition via webcam is put into some Dell laptops. What concerns me about this new feature is that Apple would effectively hold, on record, the largest fingerprint-to-name database in the world. All voluntarily. By you.

I’m not one to dive into conspiracy theories, but they would have that information. We all also know with the hacking attempts and successes of recent groups on large companies and organizations, such as government and banking, that no information is truly “unhackable.”

Will you be able to opt-out and not use this feature? Most likely. While there hasn’t been any direct confirmation on not using the new feature, it would be just another way to unlock your screen as there are many already.

With companies always trying to find new ways to learn more about their costumers and how to advertise to them by the gathering of information, it feels a bit intrusive when they ask for fingerprints.

But why? Typically when you think of fingerprints you might think the justice system, and how they have a database to search for those that have already been processed before. It goes a little deeper than that though.

Agencies and organizations use fingerprint identification systems for security systems, building entry, entrance to specialized areas, personal safes, and so on. While other identification systems exist such as voice recognition and retinal scanning… oh wait, doesn’t your phone already have the capacity for that? While retinal scanning isn’t a common feature in the newest iPhones, the technology isn’t that far behind. Apple would have access to all those people’s fingerprints that use the iPhone feature.

This article wasn’t meant to scare you, or breed the fear of a “big brother.” Be smart about your technology and your personal information.

The more you give, the more intrusive they will become.