A week ago today, Samsung was “investigating” a nasty bug that allowed anybody to bypass the in-screen fingerprint reader if the phone was using a cheap screen protector. Now it’s ready to act, and Android Police says that the fix is about to drop on all affected devices.
To be exact, it says the patch will roll out in the next 24 hours, but given the piece was published 12 hours ago we’re just going to say “today.” The notice explains the source of the problem: “if you’ve used a screen cover, such as a silicone cover with a textured surface on the inside, the texture itself may be recognised as a fingerprint that can unlock your phone.”
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So if you’ve got a Galaxy S10, S10 Plus, Note 10 or Note 10 Plus, be on the look out for it. You won’t have to look hard, as anybody who has registered a fingerprint on their device will receive a notification, and the company is playing hard ball with this: you won’t be able to clear said notification until the update has been installed.
Samsung recommends anybody who has used a screen protector register their fingerprints again to guarantee everything is working as expected. “If you have used screen protective covers in the past, fingerprints registered on your device may contain incorrect fingerprint information, that may reproduce the recognition issue” the explanation reads.
“If you have registered fingerprints on your device with a screen protector on, or have used the fingerprint scanner with a screen protector on, please delete all previous fingerprints and re-register fingerprints without a cover applied.”
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You’ve got to hand it to Samsung: this is a very quick turnaround for a fix, assuming it arrives today as promised. Still, Samsung had to act fast: a broken fingerprint reader would play havoc with banking apps, and earlier this week NatWest pulled its app from the Play Store for S10 devices until the issue was resolved.
Have you had problems with the S10 or Note 10 fingerprint reader? Let us know on Twitter: @TrustedReviews.