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Since upgrading to Mountain Lion (from Snow Leopard), I have noticed that always when I wake up my MacBook Pro, a window from the previously active application is moved to the front.

What causes this? Can I turn this "feature" off?

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FWIW, I had this problem long before Mountain Lion. –  Daniel Lawson Dec 31 '12 at 7:26
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Thanks Daniel Lawson for pointing to the solution:

The issue is cause by the 'require password after sleep or screen saver begins' option in the system security settings. If you turn this off, the issue disappears.

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