Facelocker is a native Android mobile app that uses Face Recognition to authenticate the user of a smartphone. The app allows / denies access to the phone itself (phone lock) and / or to specific mobile apps.

The user can define (add) the mobile apps that are protected by Facelocker. Also, the newly installed apps are automatically detected by Facelocker, and the user is prompted if he wants to enable protection for the newly installed app.

The user can see all the mobile apps that are protected by Facelocker in a single list, and he can block / unblock every app with just a single touch action. Also, in the same list, he can remove apps, temporarily disable the block rule, or he can edit the permissions for a certain app by using a swipe gesture.


Here is a list with some of the main features of the Facelocker mobile app:

  • System hooks support in order to detect if an application was started or not.
  • Functionality for defining custom rules and restrictions for every application installed on the phone.
  • Overlay support for blocking the protected apps before face detection
  • Low-level functionality for bypassing various security limitations
  • Automatic detection of newly installed apps and support for allowing the user to enable app protection without the requirement to launch Facelocker manually
  • The user is able to disable the security features enforced for an application permanently or for a limited period of time


The user has to login in order to use the app. Once the user logs in for the first time, he’ll have to choose which mobile apps to protect:

Facelocker app list

In the following screenshot you can see the Home page, which contains the protected apps, and the options the user has for each one of the mobile apps:

Facelocker home page

This is the Settings screen, where the user can turn on / turn off the face recognition process for the mobile apps, or even for the phone:

Facelocker settings screen

The image below presents the Menu screen of the logged user where he can choose to update his profile or enter the applications list:

Facelocker menu screen


  • Environment: Android 4.x, 5.x
  • Development technologies: Java SDK 1.6, Android SDK Tools 19, Face Detection SDK
  • Requirements: Apache Server 2.2 (or above), Android OS 4.x (or above)

TECHNOLOGIES used for this Case Study: