A protection motivation theory approach to improving compliance with password guidelines

Usernames and passwords form the most widely used method of user authentication on the Internet. Yet, users still find compliance with password guidelines difficult. The primary objective of this research was to investigate how compliance with password guidelines and password quality can be improved. This study investigated how user perceptions of passwords and security threats affect compliance with password guidelines and explored if altering these perceptions would improve compliance. This research also examined if compliance with password guidelines can be sustained over time. This study focuses on personal security, particularly factors that influence compliance when using personal online accounts.