ACSAC 2012
Conference paper

Biometric authentication on a mobile device: A study of user effort, error and task disruption

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We examine three biometric authentication modalities - voice, face and gesture - as well as password entry, on a mobile device, to explore the relative demands on user time, effort, error and task disruption. Our laboratory study provided observations of user actions, strategies, and reactions to the authentication methods. Face and voice biometrics conditions were faster than password entry. Speaking a PIN was the fastest for biometric sample entry, but short-term memory recall was better in the face verification condition. None of the authentication conditions were considered very usable. In conditions that combined two biometric entry methods, the time to acquire the biometric samples was shorter than if acquired separately but they were very unpopular and had high memory task error rates. These quantitative results demonstrate cognitive and motor differences between biometric authentication modalities, and inform policy decisions in selecting authentication methods. Copyright 2012 ACM.