Jailbreak Tweak Uses Touch ID On iPhone 5s To Unlock Individual Apps

Apple lets Touch ID be used to unlock the iPhone and make purchases through the iTunes Store, but jailbreakers have other ideas.

Apple lets Touch ID be used to unlock the iPhone and make purchases through the iTunes Store, but jailbreakers have other ideas.

Since the iOS 7 jailbreak came out, one of the hottest new iOS hardware features that hackers have been looking to utilize is Touch ID in the iPhone 5s. For example, a tweak was just recently released that allows jailbreakers to use Touch ID to simulate pressing the home button.

The coolest use of Touch ID I’ve seen in a jailbreak tweak so far is AppLocker, which was updated to version 2.2 today in Cydia with 64-bit and iPhone 5s support. The premise is simple: AppLocker lets you lock individual iOS apps (stock or third-party) with a password. On the 5s, you can now use Touch ID to unlock.

Here’s a hands-on look:

Jailbreak Tweak Uses Touch ID On iPhone 5s To Unlock Individual Apps

The obvious concern here for most will be security. Apple promises that Touch ID data is stored safety in a Secure Enclave of the A7 processor. Fingerprint data is not supposed to be accessible or readable by anything other than iOS.

When I asked the maker of AppLocker how he managed to use Touch ID for something other than what Apple allows, his answer was that users’ stored fingerprints are still safe. They are stored in encrypted hashes that can’t be read or uploaded online. “All I am doing is asking iOS, ‘Hey, is this finger authenticated?’ and I get either a ‘Yes’ or a ‘No.'”

Another tweak called BioProtect does the same thing as AppLocker and was released in Cydia today. While AppLocker can do more than use Touch ID to unlock apps, BioProtect looks more aesthetically pleasing. However, users have been complaining of significant battery drain after using BioProtect.

  • garudra

    Finally a good reason to jailbreak my iphone!

About the author

Alex HeathAlex Heath is a staff writer at Cult of Mac and co-host of the CultCast. He has been quoted by the likes of the BBC, KRON 4 News, and books like "ICONIC: A Photographic Tribute to Apple Innovation." If you want to pitch a story, share a tip, or just get in touch, additional contact information is available on his personal site. Twitter always works too.

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