Seamless Security? LG Develops an Invisible Fingerprint Censor

Fingerprint censors are all the rage in mobile phones these days, with the feature becoming common even in cheaper and more affordable mobile devices. In a leap for the technology that enables personal cybersecurity, LG has announced a fingerprint censor that resides under a phone screen’s glass.

LG’s components subsidiary, LG Innotek, has revealed a new fingerprint reader module that can be integrated underneath a phone screen’s display glass.

Most phones these days come with a sensor component integrated into the home button of the device, primarily due to restrictions caused by the current breed of fingerprint censors.

Notably, the innovation also helps manufacturers to waterproof their phones and protect screens from damage like scratches. Manufacturers will also have increased freedom when designing the device’s aesthetics whilst improving upon a phone’s bezel size. Without the need for space that would otherwise house a fingerprint component, the phone’s bezels could also be made smaller, whilst the fingerprint scanner resides under the screen.

To make the invisible fingerprint scanner that will reside under the screen, LG Innotek cut a “shallow furrow of 0.01 inches (0.33mm) thick on the lower backside” of the screen glass, toward the bottom of a phone.

A spokeswoman for LG told Korea Times:

The new module is expected to drastically reduce any smartphone malfunctions, as it does not require a specific button for fingerprint recognition. We are in talks with some handset manufacturers to commercialize the new modules within the year.

New Sensor, Same Security

LG Innotek also claimed that the modules fingerprint security is on par with the existing button-type, conventional fingerprint module. The cybersecurity efficiency, in other words, is just as good as the current breed of under-the-home-button fingerprint modules, at a 0.002 false acceptance rate (FAR).

The FAR is essentially the probability of error wherein a fingerprint censor could recognize a different user’s biometric thumbprint information as that of the phone’s user.

Featured image from LG Innotek.

Samburaj is the contributing editor at Hacked and keeps tabs on science, technology and cyber security.