A Vietnamese firm called Bkav claims that it has successfully hacked into an iPhone X using an elaborate mask to beat the Face ID feature on the flagship handset.

When Apple unveiled the iPhone X as its flagship handset in September this year, the device was met with a lot of mixed feelings especially for eliminating the Touch ID fingerprint scanner. It instead introduced a new feature called Face ID which as the alternative for securely unlocking the device. However, there was a lot of criticism as to how secure the Face ID feature is and as a result, it has been subjected to tests to determine whether it is as good as Apple claims.

Bkav researchers claim that they were able to unlock an iPhone X through Face ID by through the use of an elaborate mask that was made through the use of 2D and 3D components. The Vietnamese research firm demonstrated their impressive act in a video and they claim that it was all done without familiarizing the iPhone with the components used to make the mask.

“It is quite hard to make the ‘correct’ mask without certain knowledge of security. We were able to trick Apple’s AI, as mentioned in the writing, because we understood how their AI worked and how to bypass it,” the Bkav team revealed.

The Vietnamese firm did not reveal the number of attempts that they made before they finally got past Face ID. However, they disclosed that it cost about $150 for the parts they used, excluding the 3D printer. The announcement that an iPhone X can be unlocked using an elaborate mask might present itself as a huge threat to Apple as well as iPhone X users. This is because it means that the security feature is not as secure as advertised.

Apple has so far not released any statement regarding the matter and it is not clear whether the Face ID hack should be a genuine source of concern. However, Facebook has previously advised users not to use the feature exclusively. Meanwhile, it would be a cause of worry if unlocking Face ID was easy but the Vietnamese researchers claim that they used a labor-intensive method that also required a lot of technical knowledge.