December 14, 2015 -
A recent study by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland about user attitudes to personal identification methods found that the most popular authentication methods were internet banking access codes, passwords and fingerprints.
Most important to users, however, was to feel in control of their own information and who else gets to access it.
“Convenience plays a large part also when using very traditional authentication methods such as passwords,” says researcher Katri Grenman. “In order to make remembering them easier, users resort using the same password in many places or choosing one that is easy to remember – which, incidentally, also makes it easy to guess.”
In VTT’s study, Italian and Finnish consumers were asked about ten different authentication methods ranging from passwords, PIN codes, internet banking access codes to biometric facial recognition and fingerprint recognition and compared these with a new picture-based authentication method.
Users were asked their opinions on the authentication methods’ safety, convenience and first impressions.
“Being used to something is important, when people decide what they want to use,” Grenman says. “Finns trust banks and are used to using their internet banking access codes for strong authentication. Bank access codes were at the top in our comparison”.
Passwords and fingerprint authentication were also in the top three authentication methods both in Finland and Italy.
VTT says the popularity of fingerprints is probably mostly due to convenience, however, some users were worried about their biometric data leaking out.
“The key factor for the users seems to be that they feel they are in control of their own information and who else can access it,” Grenman says. “It’s usually a question of trust, and trust is slow to earn but quick to lose – often for good.”