Smartphone Users’ Family, Friends, and Other Enemies

The number of smartphone users worldwide was expected to surpass 2 billion in 2016. To protect personal and other sensitive information from unauthorized access, some smartphone users lock their phones. Yet, others don’t, risking the data and online services accessible through their devices. The risks emanate from both device thieves and those whobelong to the users’ social circles, so called social insiders. In 2014, 2.1 million Americans (under 2%) had phones stolen. Continue reading “Smartphone Users’ Family, Friends, and Other Enemies”

Predicting Smartphone Users’ Permission Decisions

Current smartphone operating systems regulate application permissions by prompting users on an ask-on-first-use basis. Prior research has shown that this method is ineffective because it fails to account for context: the circumstances under which an application first requests access to data may be vastly different than the circumstances under which it subsequently requests access. Continue reading “Predicting Smartphone Users’ Permission Decisions”

“I Don’t Use Apple Pay Because It’s Less Secure …”

This paper reports on why people use, not use, or have stopped using mobile tap-and-pay in stores. The results of our online survey with 349 Apple Pay and 511 Android Pay participants suggest that the top reason for using mobile tap-and-pay is usability. Surprisingly, for nonusers of Apple Pay, security was their biggest concern. Continue reading ““I Don’t Use Apple Pay Because It’s Less Secure …””

Social Insider Attacks on Facebook

Facebook accounts are secured against unauthorized access through passwords and device-level security. Those , however, may not be sufficient to prevent social insider attacks, where attackers know their victims, and gain access to a victim’s account by interacting directly with their device. Continue reading “Social Insider Attacks on Facebook”

“I’m too Busy to Reset my LinkedIn Password”

A common security practice used to deal with a password breach is locking user accounts and sending out an email to tell users that they need to reset their password to unlock their account. This paper evaluates the effectiveness of this security practice based on the password reset email that LinkedIn sent out around May 2016, and through an online survey conducted on 249 LinkedIn users who received that email. Our evaluation shows that only about 46% of the participants reset their passwords. Continue reading ““I’m too Busy to Reset my LinkedIn Password””