Sensor-Based Continuous Authentication of Smartphones' Users Using Behavioral Biometrics: A Contemporary Survey

Mohammed Abuhamad, Ahmed Abusnaina, Daehun Nyang, David Mohaisen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


Mobile devices and technologies have become increasingly popular, offering comparable storage and computational capabilities to desktop computers allowing users to store and interact with sensitive and private information. The security and protection of such personal information are becoming more and more important since mobile devices are vulnerable to unauthorized access or theft. User authentication is a task of paramount importance that grants access to legitimate users at the point of entry and continuously through the usage session. This task is made possible with today's smartphones' embedded sensors that enable continuous and implicit user authentication by capturing behavioral biometrics and traits. In this article, we survey more than 140 recent behavioral biometric-based approaches for continuous user authentication, including motion-based methods (28 studies), gait-based methods (19 studies), keystroke dynamics-based methods (20 studies), touch gesture-based methods (29 studies), voice-based methods (16 studies), and multimodal-based methods (34 studies). The survey provides an overview of the current state-of-The-Art approaches for continuous user authentication using behavioral biometrics captured by smartphones' embedded sensors, including insights and open challenges for adoption, usability, and performance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9179700
Pages (from-to)65-84
Number of pages20
JournalIEEE Internet of Things Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 IEEE.


  • Continuous authentication
  • mobile sensing
  • sensor-based authentication
  • smartphone authentication


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