Computer security information in stories, news articles, and education documents

Katie Hoban, Emilee Rader, Rick Wash, Kami Vaniea

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Despite the large amount of computer security information available to them, end users are often thought of as the weakest link in computer security. The information they have access to comes in many formats: news articles, news broadcasts, education documents, books, stories, and many more. However, inefficient or inconsistent communication between content providers and
content consumers may result in knowledge gaps for the consumers. The quality and attributes of the computer security information available to users impact their ability to learn from them. To better understand this state of affairs, we collected news articles, education documents, and a survey about stories endusers had heard about computer security. We then analyzed the trends present across all three datasets. We found that there are serious mismatches between these datasets concerning the topics of hackers, viruses + malware, and phishing + spam; discrepancies that may impact the communication of computer security information to end-users.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSymposium On Usable Privacy and Security 2014
Number of pages2
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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