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Modifying smartphone user locking behavior

With an increasing number of organizations allowing personal smart phones onto their networks, considerable security risk is introduced. The security risk is exacerbated by the tremendous heterogeneity of the personal mobile devices and their respective installed pool of applications. Furthermore, by virtue of the devices not being owned by the organization, the ability to authoritatively enforce organizational security polices is challenging. As a result, a critical part of organizational security is the ability to drive user security behavior through either on-device mechanisms or security awareness programs. In this paper, we establish a baseline for user security behavior from a population of over one hundred fifty smart phone users. We then systematically evaluate the ability to drive behavioral change via messaging centered on morality, deterrence, and incentives. Our findings suggest that appeals to morality are most effective over time, whereas deterrence produces the most immediate reaction. Additionally, our findings show that while a significant portion of users are securing their devices without prior intervention, it is difficult to influence change in those who do not.


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