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Samsung Issuing Galaxy S10 Fingerprint Fix: What You Need to Know

Galaxy S10 Fingerprint sensor
(Image credit: Future)

Samsung is quietly patching a problem in its Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10 lineups that allowed anyone to unlock the devices using their ultrasonic fingerprint sensors.

The Korean conglomerate has published a software update notice that says it's fixing the issue starting today (Oct. 24).

"If you've used a screen cover, such as a silicone cover with a textured surface on the inside, the texture itself may be recognized as a fingerprint that can unlock your phone," Samsung said in the notice, which was initially spotted by Android Police.

The problem first surfaced a few weeks ago, when users reported potential unauthorized access to their Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10 when using a silicone-based screen protector. Samsung has recommended that users employ its own screen protector, which is made of a hardened plastic instead of the silicone and doesn't suffer from the same problem. According to reports, the texture on the silicone covers fools the fingerprint sensor into believing it's seeing grooves on a person's finger and allows anyone access to the phone.

After the news surfaced, Samsung said that it would work up a fix, and that is coming now. The company said that it will push the update automatically to the devices and users will see a notification called "Biometrics update" when it's available. They'll need to tap Update on the notification to begin the process. 

Samsung also said in the notice that users who have used front screen covers should "delete all previous fingerprints" from their phones and re-register them without a cover attached to the display.

"Samsung cannot ensure optimum fingerprint registration or scanning unless the software has been updated to the latest version, and strongly recommend users to refrain from using screen covers, such as silicone covers with textured surfaces inside," the company wrote in its notice.