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A US senator has challenged Apple over its new facial recognition technology which replaces fingerprint recognition as a supposedly more secure means of entry to its latest upmarket iPhone X models.

Thanks to new cameras and sensors, the deluxe iPhone X allows users to unlock the phone by pointing it at their face, which Apple maintains is a faster and more secure system than fingerprint pressing.

But privacy advocates and – it now seems – US politicians have their doubts.

Said US Senator Al Franken in a public letter to Apple leaders: “Unlike a password, an individual’s faceprint is permanent, public, and uniquely identifies its owner.

“Should a bad actor gain access to the faceprint data that Face ID requires, the ramifications could last forever, particularly if Apple’s biometric technology comes to be used in other devices and settings.”

Apple’s senior VP of worldwide marketing, Phil Schiller, said the chances of a non-owner breaking into an iPhone using Face ID are one in a million, 40 times less likely than the current Touch ID fingerprint system.

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