Alice N. Sanders
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Future iPhone Thieves May Have Their Fingerprints & Pictures Captured by the Device Itself

Future iterations of the iPhone may be getting more storage, fewer ports, all-glass construction, and maybe even an iris scanner, but that’s not all Apple has in store for its flagship device in terms of technological advancement. According to a newly published patent, Apple may be adding additional security to future iPhones and iPads — features that could drastically cut down on thefts of the phones and tablets.

Filed back in April and published today, the new patent outlines a “trigger condition” in which biometric information of a device-swiping thief would be captured by the device itself. And this isn’t limited to just fingerprints and pictures. According to the patent, the information “may be one or more fingerprints, one or more images of a current user of the computing device, video of the current user, audio of the environment of the computing device, forensic interface use information, and so on. The computing device may then provide the stored biometric information for identification of one or more unauthorized users.”

As The Verge points out, however, implementation of the technology could be a ways off. Not only would it require a massively overhauled version of Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint-reading technology (which currently necessitates numerous button presses at various angles to properly capture a fingerprint), but it also raises a number of privacy concerns with regards to capture and storage of biometric information and “could tarnish the company’s reputation with regards to user security.”