Previous authentication methods of establishing ones’ identity to a computer system, by using a password or presenting a token are vulnerable to circumvention by misplacement or unauthorized sharing. Biometric authentication methods offer uniqueness and permanent human physiological characteristics that are difficult to share or compromise. This study seeks to provide insight into the area of biometric as ‘something the user knows,’ and ‘something the user is.’ This concept is where the user presents multiple instances of a biometric (BIO) feature in a sequence, as one would enter a Personal Identification Number (PIN). The user authenticates to the system by presenting fingerprints, finger segments, facial recognition, or other mixture of biometric measures in a specific sequence is being called the BIO-PIN™.

The main goal of the study is to examine the role of three authentication methods (username/password, BIO-PIN™, & BIO+PIN), and time, on the effectiveness of authentication, as well as the users’ ability to remember the BIO-PIN™ sequence, versus username/password or BIO+PIN (multiple fingerprints without sequence & a numerical PIN). Additionally, this research-in-progress (week nine of a 10-week period) examines the authentication methods when controlled for age, gender, user’s computers experience, and number of accounts. Preliminary results are presented here. The latest results will be presented along with open discussions on how innovative user authentication method can lead to additional studies.