The modern mobile device has become an everyday tool for users and business. Technological advancements in the device itself and the networks that connect them have enabled a range of services and data access which have introduced a subsequent increased security risk. Given the latter, the security requirements need to be re-evaluated and authentication is a key countermeasure in this regard. However, it has traditionally been poorly served and would benefit from research to better understand how authentication can be provided to establish sufficient trust. This thesis investigates the security requirements of mobile devices through literature as well as acquiring the user’s perspectives. Given the findings it proposes biometric authentication as a means to establish a more trustworthy approach to user authentication and considers the applicability and topology considerations. Given the different risk and requirements, an authentication framework that offers transparent and continuous is developed. A thorough end-user evaluation of the model demonstrates many positive aspects of transparent authentication. The technical evaluation however, does raise a number of operational challenges that are difficult to achieve in a practical deployment. The research continues to model and simulate the operation of the framework in an controlled environment seeking to identify and correlate the key attributes of the system. Based upon these results and a number of novel adaptations are proposed to overcome the operational challenges and improve upon the impostor detection rate. The new approach to the framework simplifies the approach significantly and improves upon the security of the system, whilst maintaining an acceptable level of usability.

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