The web-site is now in readonly mode. Login and registration are disabled. (28 June 2019)

User authentication on mobile devices

Cloud created by:

Keren Mills
30 April 2012

Access to online content is sometimes restricted, particularly if the content is private or has to be paid for.

Scholarly peer-reviewed content such as published journal articles or ebooks are often only available by paying for access. At most universities the library pays for access on behalf of all the staff and registered students, and authentication is used to ensure that only authorised users gain access to the subscription content. This authentication is usually in the form of a user name and password, or sometimes a lot of different usernames and passwords.

Passwords which are considered secure tend to consist of complex alphanumeric strings of characters, which can be difficult to enter through a mobile keyboard. This is particularly a problem on touchscreen keyboards, because it can be quite easy to tap one of the characters around the one you were aiming for, but as the password field tends to be obscured you may not realise you've entered your password incorrectly.

For users whose main aim is to gain access to scholarly content this can be a source of enormous frustration. This cloud will explore some of the possible ways to make mobile authentication easier for users.

Extra content

Embedded Content


Contribute to the discussion

Please log in to post a comment. Register here if you haven't signed up yet.