Don’t panic, this yet another usual WhatsApp scam won’t steal your fingerprint.

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A shocking ‘warning is viral on WhatsApp that a you may receive a message which will ask you to unlock a card to wish you ‘Happy Independence Day” by keeping your thumb where it asks and it will steal your thumbprint and can use to harm you.

Recently UIDAI was much in news, people were little afraid of their bio-metrics data being misused and this message adds up to the same fear.

English –

“To all my friends, be careful of some msgs in WhatsApp that asks you to put your thumb in a screen to unlock a msg like happy Independence day or happy new year… Beware of these msgs and don’t put your thumb anywhere. Scanning your thumb impression will give the app owners access to your biometric data, this is very serious as your Aadhar biometric is linked to PAN, banks etc.. be very careful and spread the message !! cyber crime on the rise now. #TRAI”

Hindi –

कृपया एकदम सतर्क रहें … 🙏🏼

मेरे सभी दोस्तों के लिए, व्हाट्सएप में कुछ संदेशों से सावधान रहें जो आपको स्वतंत्रता दिवस या नया साल मुबारक हो जैसे संदेश को अनलॉक करने के लिए स्क्रीन में अपना अंगूठा लगाने के लिए कहता है … इन संदेशों से सावधान रहें और कहीं भी अपना अंगूठा न रखें।
आपके अंगूठे की छाप स्कैन करने से ऐप मालिकों को आपके बॉयोमीट्रिक डेटा तक पहुंच मिल जाएगी, यह बहुत गंभीर है क्योंकि आपके आधार बॉयोमीट्रिक पैन, बैंक इत्यादि से जुड़ा हुआ है .. बहुत सावधान रहें और संदेश फैलाएं !! अब वृद्धि पर साइबर अपराध।🙏🏼👌🏽

Following is what the warning is about –

It lures you to see a surprise gift after you scan your finger by keeping on the fingerprint image in above screenshot.

When you touch it (with any finger, any angle) it shows a bar crossing from top to bottom as if it’s really scanning your fingerprint and leads you to another page wishing you Happy Independence Day with patriotic song playing in background.

So the Viral message warns you about this so called ‘Scan’.

The it opens up another page

Now this story has two parts

  1. The message asking you to scan your thumb and gifting you a surprise
  2. The Viral warning message against above claiming it will steal your thumbprint and that this warning is from TRAI

Well, the first part is the usual WhatsApp scam, it needs website traffic to earn money from the advertisements shown on the page. Many such have been debunked by SMHoaxSlayer in last few years. You can see the “Hi” ad in above image. “Stupid” is the name I was trying to be 😉

About the theft of thumbprint –

Firstly as said before, it’s just a poorly made website to earn money from advertisements placed on the page and the the thumbprint image is just a gif image i.e animated image. It’s a transparent gif so white background, click here to see the image hosted on that site with black background.



It’s just a JavaScript which waits for your touch in a specific area to take action
Analyzing further, the mobile display cannot scan the fingerprint at all.
In few new mobile models your fingerprint scanner is on the display but it’s not because of software or OS, it’s an additional hardware. It’s a clear sensor of approx 4X5 cms placed at a particular place which also stops sensing once the mobile screen is unlocked.
The new mobiles which this feature is less in numbers and is costly too.
The clear sensor placed under the screen is made by Synaptics – the leading developer of human interface solutions

“Designed to enable smartphones with infinity displays, Synaptics’ Clear ID in-display fingerprint sensors are placed in a natural location directly in the OLED touchscreen, eliminating the need for buttons and bezels. A fingerprint icon in the display guides the user and disappears upon authentication. Clear ID is faster than alternative biometrics such as 3D facial, and very convenient with one-touch biometric authentication. Clear ID is also available with Synaptics SentryPoint™ technology, offering OEMs a wide-range of unique and highly secure authentication software features including Quantum Matcher™ for adaptive fingerprint template matching and authentication.

“It’s been terrific working with Vivo to bring cutting-edge leadership and differentiation to market with Clear ID. The fast-paced industry-shift towards bezel-free OLED infinity displays has driven fingerprint authentication into the touchscreen display area of smartphones and Synaptics proud to be mass-production-ready to take on volume demand,” said Kevin Barber, senior vice president and general manager, Mobile Division, Synaptics.”


False –

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