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Security Behavior Observatory

Researchers: Alessandro Acquisti, Nicolas Christin, Lorrie Cranor, Rahul Telang

Research Area: Secure Home Computing | Privacy Protection

Cross Cutting Thrusts: Software Security | Usable Privacy and Security | Threat Analysis and Modeling


The objective of the Security Behavior Observatory is to better understand the challenges that everyday people face when using their home computers over both the short- and long-term. Towards this goal, we are building and deploying data collection software that participants install on their computers, which provides metrics on a variety of computer and user behaviors. With this data, we hope to identify the causes and effects of usable privacy and security problems users encounter in daily everyday computing. This will provide insights to multiple research areas (e.g., behavioral economics, computer security, human-computer interaction, privacy, social sciences) on what areas most urgently need additional research as well as how we can better help users, developers, and organizations resolve these problems.


Technical Report: Security Behavior Observatory: Infrastructure for Long-term Monitoring of Client Machines