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Mobile phone user authentication with grip gestures using pressure sensors

Kazuya Murao (Information Science and Engineering Department, Ritsumeikan University, Kusatsu, Japan)
Hayami Tobise (Graduate School of Engineering, Kobe University, Hyogo, Japan)
Tsutomu Terada (Graduate School of Engineering, Kobe University, Kobe, Japan)
Toshiki Iso (Research Laboratories, NTT DOCOMO, Kanagawa, Japan)
Masahiko Tsukamoto (Graduate School of Engineering, Kobe University, Kobe, Japan)
Tsutomu Horikoshi (Research Laboratories , NTT DOCOMO, Kanagawa, Japan)

International Journal of Pervasive Computing and Communications

ISSN: 1742-7371

Article publication date: 7 September 2015




User authentication is generally used to protect personal information such as phone numbers, photos and account information stored in a mobile device by limiting the user to a specific person, e.g. the owner of the device. Authentication methods with password, PIN, face recognition and fingerprint identification have been widely used; however, these methods have problems of difficulty in one-handed operation, vulnerability to shoulder hacking and illegal access using fingerprint with either super glue or facial portrait. From viewpoints of usability and safety, strong and uncomplicated method is required.


In this paper, a user authentication method is proposed based on grip gestures using pressure sensors mounted on the lateral and back sides of a mobile phone. Grip gesture is an operation of grasping a mobile phone, which is assumed to be done instead of conventional unlock procedure. Grip gesture can be performed with one hand. Moreover, it is hard to imitate grip gestures, as finger movements and grip force during a grip gesture are hardly seen by the others.


The feature values of grip force are experimentally investigated and the proposed method from viewpoint of error rate is evaluated. From the result, this method achieved 0.02 of equal error rate, which is equivalent to face recognition.


Many researches using pressure sensors to recognize grip pattern have been proposed thus far; however, the conventional works just recognize grip patterns and do not identify users, or need long pressure data to finish confident authentication. This proposed method authenticates users with a short grip gesture.



© Kazuya Murao, Hayami Tobise, Tsutomu Terada, Toshiki Iso, Masahiko Tsukamoto, Tsutomu Horikoshi.


Murao, K., Tobise, H., Terada, T., Iso, T., Tsukamoto, M. and Horikoshi, T. (2015), "Mobile phone user authentication with grip gestures using pressure sensors", International Journal of Pervasive Computing and Communications, Vol. 11 No. 3, pp. 288-301.



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Copyright © 2015, Authors

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