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Acceptance of subscriber authentication methods for mobile telephony

Clarke NL, Furnell SM, Rodwell PM, Reynolds PL
Computers & Security, vol. 21, no.3, pp220-228, 2002
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Mobile phones are now an accepted part of everyday life, with users becoming more reliant on the services that they can provide. In the vast majority of systems, the only security to prevent unauthorised use of the handset is a four digit Personal Identification Number (PIN). This paper presents the findings of a survey into the opinions of subscribers regarding the need for security in mobile devices, their use of current methods, and their attitudes towards alternative approaches that could be employed in the future. It is concluded that, although the need for security is understood and appreciated, the current PIN-based approach is under-utilised and can, therefore, be considered to provide inadequate protection in many cases. Surveyed users responded positively towards alternative methods of authentication, such as fingerprint scanning and voice verification. Based upon these findings, the paper concludes that a non-intrusive, and possibly hybrid, method of authentication (using a combination of techniques) would best satisfy the needs of future subscribers.

Clarke NL, Furnell SM, Rodwell PM, Reynolds PL