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Rahul Telang

Professor, Heinz College


Rahul Telang

Research Areas

Privacy Protection, Secure Home Computing

Cross Cutting Thrusts

Software Security, Threat Analysis and Modeling, Usable Privacy and Security


Rahul Telang is a Professor of Information Systems at Carnegie Mellon University. Professor Telang’s research interest lies in two major domains. First is on Digital Media Industry with a particular focus on digitization of songs, movies, TV and books is affecting the incentives of content provider, content distributors as well public policy challenges in terms of innovation and copyright. In particular, he has examined the issue proliferation of distribution platforms including online piracy and its impact on traditional music, movies and books industry. Recently, he is investigating the role of social networks on music diffusion, technology adoption, and employee job search. Some of his prior work explored the challenges of interaction of multiple platforms (web portals vs telephony for customer service; SMS and voice for cellular phones). He was the recipient of Sloan Foundation Industry Study fellowship for his work in this domain and is a co-director of Digital Media Research Center at the Heinz College. His work is also funded extensively by industry participants including Google.

His second area of work is on economics of information security and privacy. He has examined the issue of vendors’ incentives to improve the quality of their products and role of policy making and standards in changing these incentives. His earlier work explores the challenges of vulnerability disclosure and how competition and policy making affect these patch release decisions. Recently, he is examining the role of data breach disclosure laws on identity thefts. He was the recipient of NSF CAREER award for his work on economics of information security.

Dr. Telang has published extensively in many top journals like Management Science, Marketing Science, Information Systems Research, MIS Quarterly, and Journal of Marketing Research. He is on the editorial board of Management Science and ISR. He has organized many conferences and workshops and many of his papers have received top honors at journals and conferences.


Ph.D. in Information Systems, 2002. Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University

Bachelors of Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani, India.

Research Projects

Security Behavior Observatory

Research Area: Secure Home Computing | Privacy Protection
Cross Cutting Thrusts: Software Security | Usable Privacy and Security | Threat Analysis and Modeling
Researchers: Alessandro Acquisti, Nicolas Christin, Lorrie Cranor, Rahul Telang

Protecting Privacy and Confidentiality of Information

Research Area: Privacy Protection
Researcher: Rahul Telang

The Economic Incentive to Improve Software Security

Researchers: Rahul Telang, Ashish Arora


"Building the security behavior observatory: an infrastructure for long-term monitoring of client machines". A. Forget, S. Komanduri, A. Acquisti, N. Christin, L. Cranor, and R. Telang, HotSoS ’14: Proceedings of the 2014 Symposium and Bootcamp on the Science of Security, pp. 1–2, 2014.

"An empirical Analysis of Digital Music Bundling Strategies". B Danaher, Y Huang, M Smith, R Telang (2014), Forthcoming, Management Science.

"Piracy and Copyright Enforcement Mechanism". B Danaher, M Smith, R Telang (2014), Innovation Policy and the Economy, Vol (14), NBER  

"Inferring App demand from publicly available data". Rajiv Garg, Rahul Telang (2013), MIS Quarterly, 37(4)

"Do Data Breach Disclosure Laws Reduce Identity Theft?". S. Romanosky, R. Telang, A. Acquisti (2011), Journal of Policy Analysis and Management (JPAM)30 (2), 256-286.