Endpoint
4/18/2013
03:26 PM
Connect Directly
Google+
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Consumers Want Biometrics, Survey Finds

New Ponemon Institute study shows disillusionment and problems with passwords in online transactions

Most consumers support biometrics for authentication, with voice recognition, facial, and fingerprint scans as their top identity verification methods.

They're also getting frustrated with passwords, with half of them having frequently been unable to conduct an online transaction due to an authentication failure on the website, according to a new survey by The Ponemon Institute and commissioned by Nok Nok Labs. Most of these problems were due to forgotten passwords, usernames, or answers to their preset security questions. Some 60 percent say they would prefer a single, multipurpose identity credential for online and physical access.

But like with most security issues, it's a delicate balance between convenience and actual security: Forty-eight percent don't trust websites or systems that rely solely on passwords, and nearly 40 percent say they don't trust financial service sites that don't require frequent password changes. But they are also tired of password and authentication failures on sites, with less than 50 percent saying authentication failures happen due to problems on the website themselves.

"It seems that people don't have a high degree of trust [with passwords], but they still use" them for online transactions, says Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder of The Ponemon Institute. "And convenience is important: They don't want to remember multiple, complex and long passwords."

The study polled some 1,900 consumers ages 18 to 65 in the U.S., U.K., and Germany, who spent at least 10 hours per week online and conducting online commerce, social networking, and blogging.

Nearly 70 percent of the respondents say that in the past two years they have forgotten one of their passwords because it was too long or complex to retain, and 61 percent were locked out of an online account due to an authentication failure of some sort in the past two years. Some 54 percent of U.S. consumers say it takes too long to reset a password.

"In general, we find folks like multipurpose credentials that would be used for many things because it's more convenient," Ponemon says. "Sixty-three percent would consider or prefer multipurpose credentials."

But the biggest surprise of the survey was how consumers now consider biometrics as an authentication option. Nearly 70 percent of U.S. consumers say biometrics is a viable authentication option. "Five or six years ago, it was no biometrics," says Phillip Dunkelberger, former CEO of PGP and now CEO of startup Nok Nok Labs.

Less than one-third of U.S. and U.K. respondents were against biometrics, with about one-fourth of Germans rejecting the method of authentication. Most support biometrics with "trusted organizations" such as banks, credit card firms, healthcare providers, email providers, or government agencies. Around one-third of consumers in each of the three regions say biometrics would only be acceptable to them if their biometric data was not accessible to the organization they are authenticating to. Voice recognition was by far the most preferred biometric, with 83 to 91 percent of the consumers in favor of it for authentication. Facial scans was next, with 65 to 72 percent of consumers, followed by fingerprints, with 56 to 62 percent of consumers. About half of U.S. and U.K. consumers say iris scanning is acceptable to them, while 66 percent of Germans are in favor of iris scanning biometrics.

The "Moving Beyond Passwords: Consumer Attitudes on Online Authentication" report is available here (PDF) for download.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Add Your Comment" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message.

Kelly Jackson Higgins is Executive Editor at DarkReading.com. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
CurtisNeeley
50%
50%
CurtisNeeley,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/25/2013 | 7:04:57 PM
re: Consumers Want Biometrics, Survey Finds
How about printing a number on the forehead that allows forehead prints to be used much the way fingerprints or facial recognition works. lets say something like 222 or 333?
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
5 Security Technologies to Watch in 2017
Emerging tools and services promise to make a difference this year. Are they on your company's list?
Flash Poll
New Best Practices for Secure App Development
New Best Practices for Secure App Development
The transition from DevOps to SecDevOps is combining with the move toward cloud computing to create new challenges - and new opportunities - for the information security team. Download this report, to learn about the new best practices for secure application development.
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2013-7445
Published: 2015-10-15
The Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) subsystem in the Linux kernel through 4.x mishandles requests for Graphics Execution Manager (GEM) objects, which allows context-dependent attackers to cause a denial of service (memory consumption) via an application that processes graphics data, as demonstrated b...

CVE-2015-4948
Published: 2015-10-15
netstat in IBM AIX 5.3, 6.1, and 7.1 and VIOS 2.2.x, when a fibre channel adapter is used, allows local users to gain privileges via unspecified vectors.

CVE-2015-5660
Published: 2015-10-15
Cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerability in eXtplorer before 2.1.8 allows remote attackers to hijack the authentication of arbitrary users for requests that execute PHP code.

CVE-2015-6003
Published: 2015-10-15
Directory traversal vulnerability in QNAP QTS before 4.1.4 build 0910 and 4.2.x before 4.2.0 RC2 build 0910, when AFP is enabled, allows remote attackers to read or write to arbitrary files by leveraging access to an OS X (1) user or (2) guest account.

CVE-2015-6333
Published: 2015-10-15
Cisco Application Policy Infrastructure Controller (APIC) 1.1j allows local users to gain privileges via vectors involving addition of an SSH key, aka Bug ID CSCuw46076.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
In past years, security researchers have discovered ways to hack cars, medical devices, automated teller machines, and many other targets. Dark Reading Executive Editor Kelly Jackson Higgins hosts researcher Samy Kamkar and Levi Gundert, vice president of threat intelligence at Recorded Future, to discuss some of 2016's most unusual and creative hacks by white hats, and what these new vulnerabilities might mean for the coming year.