Your Phone Knows You: Almost Transparent Authentication for Smartphones

Document Type

Conference Proceeding



Format of Original

10 p.

Publication Date



Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)

Source Publication

2014 IEEE 38th Annual International Computers, Software and Applications Conference

Original Item ID

doi: 10.1109/COMPSAC.2014.60


With the advent of ever more powerful smart phones, having bigger touch screens and a large assortment of exciting applications accessible through online app stores, people are using their phones to meet various ends, even critical tasks, like: mobile banking and mobile health-care, are being performed using smart phones. Although security of smart phones is vital, application-level security - in the form of end-user authentication - is often the only security mechanism that users adopt. We propose a transparent and adaptive authentication framework for smart phones that is built around the biological metaphor of how a pet recognizes its owner. Our proposed framework rids the user from remembering a strong secret and from inputting the secret via smart phone's small keypad time and again, while the pet metaphor helps assuage possible psychological issues related to the covert nature of the authentication method. We implemented a subset of our proposed framework on the Android platform and through data obtained from users, we show that the proposed framework has the potential to become effective, efficient, and popular.


Published as part of the proceedings of the conference, 2014 IEEE 38th Annual International Computers, Software and Applications Conference, 2014: 374-383. DOI.