How to lock down Facebook Messenger with Face ID or Touch ID

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Add Face ID or Touch ID to Facebook Messenger for maximum security.
Take this simple precaution to keep your chats private.
Photo: Lewis Wallace/Cult of Mac

Facebook Messenger’s new App Lock feature lets you add an extra layer of security to the popular chat app. iPhone and iPad users can switch on Face ID or Touch ID so they never need to worry about anybody seeing their messages.

The previously rumored feature, which Facebook rolled out for iOS devices Wednesday, is easy to enable. Plus, you can tweak a setting to make sure App Lock works ideally for you. Here’s all you need to do to turn on Face ID or Touch ID for Facebook Messenger.

Get ready to log into websites with Face ID or Touch ID

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Use Face ID or Touch ID to log into websites with Safari.
Logging in to websites is about to get easier for Apple users.
Screenshot: Apple

WWDC 2020 Safari users soon will be able to securely log into websites using Face ID and Touch ID. The new feature, which Apple is rolling out in iOS 14, iPadOS 14 and macOS Big Sur, should take away one of the most irritating things about using the web — remembering, and then typing in, user names and complicated passwords.

On websites that support the feature, users can opt in to use Apple’s biometric ID systems, making that irritating login dance a thing of the past.

Daily Show joke raises awareness of Face ID trick for iPhone owners wearing masks

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Trevor Noah iPhone 1
Noah says Apple's taking us back to a time before coronavirus.
Photo: Daily Show

On Trevor Noah’s Daily Social Distancing Show, the comedian addressed Apple’s decision to make it easier for users to skip Face ID for passcodes on their iPhone, due to the challenges of unlocking them while wearing a protective mask.

“This is the genius of Apple,” he said. “They’re trying to take us back in time. Because if we’re back in time, there’s no corona.” Check out the clip below.

Toggle ‘shopping mode’ on your iPhone for touch-free, mask-friendly grocery buying

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Make safe grocery acquisition a little easier with Drafts' shopping mode.
Make safe grocery acquisition a little easier with Drafts' shopping mode.
Photo: David Clarke/Unsplash

During the COVID-19 pandemic, you’ve probably become hyper-aware of how much you touch everything. Your face, your iPhone, the AirPods you never clean, the filthy handle on your apartment building’s front door, etc. And when you visit the store, using your iPhone’s Reminders app for your shopping list, you’re likely forever tapping the iPhone and using Face ID to wake it up again.

Clearly that’s useless if you’re being responsible and wearing a mask in the supermarket. Today we’ll see how to quickly toggle a “shopping mode” in the Drafts app, which will keep your iPhone awake while you dash down the aisles.

Yes, you can train Face ID to unlock while wearing a mask

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train Face ID with a mask
Face ID will let you train it while wearing a folded mask.
Photo: Xuanwu Lab

Face ID is great, as long as your iPhone can see your face. A mask — like the ones we all should be wearing to slow the coronavirus pandemic — blocks the iPhone’s Face ID sensor from seeing your face. That means you either need to remove the mask (bad) to unlock your iPhone, type in your passcode every time (annoying), or disable the passcode entirely (a terrible idea).

But, according to in-depth research from China’s Tencent Xuanwu Lab, you can train Face ID to work while you’re wearing a mask. It needs some careful setup, but once it’s done, it works reliablly and quickly. You can even wear glasses.