Understanding user behavior towards passwords through acceptance and use modelling

The security of computer systems that store our data is a major issue facing the world. This research project investigated the roles of ease of use, facilitating conditions, intention to use passwords securely, experience and age on usage of passwords, using a model based on the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology. Data was collected via an online survey of computer users, and analyzed using PLS. The results show there is a significant relationship between ease of use of passwords, intention to use them securely and the secure usage of passwords. Despite expectations, facilitating conditions only had a weak impact on intention to use passwords securely and did not influence actual secure usage. Computing experience was found to have an effect on intention to use passwords securely, but age did not. The results of this research lend themselves to assisting in policy design and better understanding user behavior.