Adversary Models for Mobile Device Authentication

René Mayrhofer, Stephan Sigg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)
366 Downloads (Pure)


Mobile device authentication has been a highly active research topic for over 10 years, with a vast range of methods proposed and analyzed. In related areas, such as secure channel protocols, remote authentication, or desktop user authentication, strong, systematic, and increasingly formal threat models have been established and are used to qualitatively compare different methods. However, the analysis of mobile device authentication is often based on weak adversary models, suggesting overly optimistic results on their respective security. In this article, we introduce a new classification of adversaries to better analyze and compare mobile device authentication methods. We apply this classification to a systematic literature survey. The survey shows that security is still an afterthought and that most proposed protocols lack a comprehensive security analysis. The proposed classification of adversaries provides a strong and practical adversary model that offers a comparable and transparent classification of security properties in mobile device authentication.

Original languageEnglish
Article number198
Pages (from-to)1-35
Number of pages35
JournalACM Computing Surveys
Issue number9
Early online dateOct 2021
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • adversary model
  • Mobile device authentication
  • survey


Dive into the research topics of 'Adversary Models for Mobile Device Authentication'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this