A group of German hackers claimed to have cracked the iPhone fingerprint scanner on Sunday, just two days after Apple launched the technology that it promises will better protect devices from criminals and snoopers seeking access.
If the claim is verified, it will be embarrassing for Apple which is betting on the scanner to set its smartphone apart from new models of Samsung and others running the Android operating system of Google Inc.
Two prominent iPhone security experts told Reuters that they believed the German group, known as the Chaos Computing Club, or CCC, had succeeded in defeating Apple's Touch ID, though they had not personally replicated the work.
(Read more: The Apple iPhone fingerprint hackfest begins)
One of them, Charlie Miller, co-author of the iOS Hacker's Handbook, described the work as "a complete break" of Touch ID security. "It certainly opens up a new possibility for attackers."
Apple representatives did not respond to requests for comment.
CCC, one the world's largest and most respected hacking groups, posted a video on its website that appeared to show somebody accessing an iPhone 5S with a fabricated print. The site described how members of its biometrics team had cracked the new fingerprint reader, one of the few major high-tech features added to the latest version of the iPhone.