Cracking crime just got a lot more innovative.
Police and biometrics researchers at Michigan State University have successfully unlocked the smartphone of a murder victim by using a digitally enhanced print-out of his fingerprint.
Officers from the digital forensics and cyber-crime unit at MSU’s police department approached the college’s biometrics research lab last month, having become aware of the team’s research (pdf) on how printed fingerprints can spoof mobile-phone sensors.
Police had the fingerprints of the murder victim from a previous arrest, which they gave to the lab to 3D print in a bid to unlock the device—a Samsung Galaxy S6.
Unsure which finger was paired to the phone, the lab printed 2D and 3D replicas of all 10 of the slain man’s fingerprints. None of them unlocked the device, so the team then digitally enhanced the quality of prints by filling in the broken ridges and valleys. Rather than opting for a more expensive 3D model, they printed new 2D versions using a special conductive ink that would create an electrical circuit needed to spoof the phone sensor.
After multiple attempts—thanks to the device not requiring a passcode after a certain number of efforts—the team successfully unlocked the phone with one of the digitally enhanced 2D prints.
An MSU spokesperson told Quartz there were plans to print 3D models to test on other devices—there was no need to do so for the victim’s phone, as the 2D print was successful.
Professor Anil Jain, who led the research team at MSU, says the unlocking demonstrates “a weakness” in smartphones’ fingerprint authentication systems, and that he hoped it would “motivate phone developers to create advanced security measures for fingerprint liveness detection.” He added:
This shows that we need to understand what types of attacks are possible on fingerprint sensors, and biometrics in general, and how to fix them. If we don’t, the public will have less confidence in using biometrics. After all, biometric authentication was introduced in consumer devices to improve security.
According to MSU, this is the first time law enforcement has used such technology as part of an ongoing investigation. A spokesperson said the lead detective “even contacted the company that was asked to help with [unlocking] the San Bernardino shooter’s phone and he kept getting the same answer: can’t do it, the tech doesn’t exist. Well, the tech exists now!”
In a statement, Samsung said:
We are aware of the research from Michigan State University, but would like to remind users that it takes special equipment, supplies and conditions to simulate a person’s fingerprint, including actual possession of the fingerprint owner’s phone, to unlock the device. If there is a potential vulnerability or a new method that challenges our efforts to ensure security at any time, we will respond to issues as quickly as possible to investigate and resolve the issue
Cracking crime just got a lot more innovative. Police and biometrics researchers at Michigan State University have successfully unlocked the smartphone of a murder victim by using a digitally enhanced print-out of his fingerprint. Officers from the digital forensics and cyber-crime unit at MSU’s police department approached the college’s biometrics research lab last month, having become […]
via Fox2 News:
At least 50 people were killed late Sunday night in a mass shooting during a concert on the Las Vegas Strip. Here’s what we know about Stephen Paddock, the man police identified as the shooter:
Paddock, 64, is from Mesquite, Nevada, authorities said. Police stormed his hotel room from which they believe he fired the shots on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. They say he had over 10 rifles when police found his body. The believe he killed himself prior to entry. He checked into the hotel on September 28th.
Paddock was apparently targeting a crowd of 30,000 people attending the Route 91 Harvest music festival below. Police believe he killed himself prior to entry into the hotel room.
Police are also at his home in Mesquite, Nevada. They are methodically investigating the property. The Mesquite Police Department had no prior contact with him, according to spokesman Quinn Averett, nor had there been any calls to Paddock’s home in Mesquite, which is about 80 miles northeast of Las Vegas. Officials did not know how long he had been living in the area.
This mass-shooting is not yet considered an act of terrorism. Police are looking into a motive for the shooting before they can call it an act of terror.
So far, the massacre has no known link to overseas terrorism or terror groups, a US official with knowledge of the case said.
And a woman described as a “person of interest” after the attack is not believed to be involved in the shooting, police said in a statement.
“Marilou Danley is no longer being sought out as a person of interest,” the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said. “LVMPD detectives have made contact with her and do not believe she is involved with the shooting on the strip.”
• Police have identified the shooter as Stephen Paddock, a 64-year-old man. He was earlier described as a “local resident.”
• Officers said they engaged the suspect at the Mandalay Bay hotel, and he was killed.
• Police do not believe there are additional shooters.
• Police report there are now at least 50 dead and some 200 injured, making this the deadliest shooting in modern US history. The 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida, was previously the deadliest, with 49 killed.
• Two off-duty Las Vegas police officers were killed in the shooting, Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said at a news conference.
• Two other officers responding to the scene were wounded, the sheriff said. One of them is in critical condition.
• Police said they are confident they have located Marilou Danley, who was traveling with the suspect. She had been sought for questioning in connection with the shooting. She is not named as a suspect.
• Police also said they have located two vehicles they were searching for: a Hyundai Tucson Nevada with a Nevada plate, and a Chrysler Pacifica Touring with a Nevada plate.
• Police are urging patience: “I think it’s very important that you understand this investigation is going to be long and contracted before we get to the bottom of everything associated with it,” Sheriff Lombardo said.
How shooting unfolded:
• Just after 10 p.m. Sunday local time (1 a.m. ET Monday) the Route 91 Harvest Festival — a country music concert — was interrupted by the sound of gunfire, witnesses said.
• Police said the gunman fired on the crowd of about 30,000 people from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel, several hundred feet southwest of the concert grounds.
• Country music singer Jason Aldean was performing when the gunshots began, according to eyewitness cell phone video.
• “The gunshots lasted for 10 to 15 minutes. It didn’t stop,” said eyewitness Rachel de Kerf.
• President Trump tweeted, “My warmest condolences and sympathies to the victims and families of the terrible Las Vegas shooting. God bless you!”
• Las Vegas Airport diverts two dozen flights due to the shooting. Travelers are being urged to check with their airlines for flight status.
• Performer Jason Aldean released a statement that said: “Tonight has been beyond horrific.” On Instagram, Aldean said that he and his crew were safe.
After a deadly mass shooting in Las Vegas, local security experts are sharing advice on how to survive an active shooter situation.
A gunman opened fire on a crowd on the Las Vegas strip Sunday night, killing at least 58 and injuring hundreds more.
The best advice from law enforcement in an active shooter situation: run, hide, or fight.
If possible, experts say the best way is to run away from the threat. Always try to escape and evacuate, even if others are insisting on staying.
However, in certain situations it may be better to remain in place and try to avoid detection.
The last option, though the least preferable, is to fight the shooter with whatever means necessary.
In August, the Virginia Beach Police Department’s Crime Prevention Unit provided it’s Active Threat Citizen Defense in a public setting for the first time.
Master Police Officer David Nieves talked to News 3 after the training about surviving an active threat situation.
“You’ve got three choices. You either need to run, hide or fight. You just need to keep your head about yourself and understand that you only have a few seconds to understand what you’re going to do. You better have a plan before you need that plan because there are no seconds, you aren’t going to have time to make a plan,” he explained.
Experts say it’s also important to remain aware of your surroundings when in public.
“Things can happen anywhere. We don’t want [people] to have the mindset that it will never happen here. It will never happen to me. If you have that mindset then you’ve already lost,” MPO Nieves stated.
Police are searching for a woman named Marilou Danley who was traveling with the suspect, Lombardo said. He described Danley as an Asian woman, 4 ft 11 inches tall and 111 pounds. “We have not located her at this time and we are interested in talking to her,” he said.
Three people were strangled or smothered to death in a Kansas drug home over a rape allegation and one of the suspects was forced to participate to save his life, according to court testimony. The details about the case were revealed during a preliminary hearing that ended Wednesday with Shawnee County District Judge Nancy Parrish…