Arab boy unlocks mother's phone using Face ID

Occurred: November 2017

10-year old Ammar Malik repeatedly unlocked his mother’s new iPhone X after she had set up the Face ID authentication system, resulting in questions about the reliability and privacy of Apple's facial recognition technology

Ammar's mother Sana Sherwani posted a video to YouTube showing him unlocking her phone in an instant, even after she had re-registered her face. The family also told WIRED that the boy was able to unlock his father’s new iPhone X. 

Commentators were unclear how the mix-up could have occurred. In a LinkedIn post, Ammar's father Malik noted his son's face is clearly smaller than his wife's, and the two have quite different facial features.

According to Apple's support page, 'The statistical probability is different for twins and siblings that look like you and among children under the age of 13, because their distinct facial features may not have fully developed. If you're concerned about this, we recommend using a passcode to authenticate.'

Operator: Apple
Developer: Apple
Country: China
Sector: Consumer goods
Purpose: Strengthen security
Technology: Facial recognition
Issue: Accuracy/reliability; Security; Privacy