Designing authentication with seniors in mind

Renaud, Karen and Scott-Brown, Kenneth C. and Szymkowiak, Andrea; (2018) Designing authentication with seniors in mind. In: Proceedings of the Mobile Privacy and Security for an Ageing Population workshop at the 20th International Conference on Human Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services (MobileHCI) 2018, Barcelona, Spain. Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), New York.

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Developers typically adopt perceived best practice, and in the case of authentication this means password security. However, given the wide range of technical solutions available and the diverse needs and limitations of older users, we suggest that the default adoption of electronic “username and password” authentication may not be 'best practice' or even good practice. This paper highlights some challenges faced by three seniors, each of whom has multiple age- related disabilities and concomitant life challenges. The result is that they cannot authenticate themselves when they need to access their devices and accounts. We conclude by suggesting a number of research directions calculated to address some of these challenges and promote inclusive design and allow for diverse user authentication.


Renaud, Karen ORCID logoORCID:, Scott-Brown, Kenneth C. and Szymkowiak, Andrea;