Lab Directorship Shifting In Summer 2019

The current lab director, Marshini Chetty, will be moving to the Department of Computer Science at the University of Chicago in Summer 2019. If you would like to work on HCI or usable security related projects after this time, please consider contacting Prof Janet Vertesi in Sociology or Prof Elissa Redmiles who will be joining the Computer Science department in Fall 2020!

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SOUPS 2019 Paper Accepted!

Congratulations to Frank Li, Lisa Rogers, Arunesh Mathur, and Nathan Malkin on their accepted SOUPS paper on how system administrators manage software updates!

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Junior Independent Work Presentations 2019

Congratulations to Theodor Marcu on his IW presentation!

Theodor Marcu at the independent work poster presentations!

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Congratulations To The Graduating Seniors In Our Lab!

Michael Swart, Marshini Chetty, Jake Reichel, and Andre Xiong

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Exploring Digital Privacy and Security in Elementary Schools @ CHI 2019

Posted on behalf of Priya Kumar.

How do elementary school educators think about privacy and security when it comes to technology use in the classroom? What privacy and security lessons do students receive? Below, I describe findings and recommendations from a paper I co-wrote on this topic with Marshini Chetty, Tammy Clegg, and Jessica Vitak. I’ll present this paper at the 2019 ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI)

What did we do? Schools across the United States have integrated various digital technologies into K-12 classrooms, even though using them poses privacy and security concerns. As part of a broader project on how children ages 5-11 conceptualize privacy online, we wanted to understand how elementary-school educators decided what technologies to use, how privacy and security factored into these decisions, and what educators taught their students about digital privacy and security.

How did we do it? We held nine focus groups with a total of 25 educators from seven school districts in three metropolitan regions in the U.S. Our participants included teachers, teaching assistants, and student teachers.

What did we find? Educators used a range of digital devices, platforms, applications, resources, and games, some that their districts provided and others that school media specialists recommended. To them, privacy and security meant responsibly handling student data (e.g. login credentials) and minimizing students’ inappropriate use of technology. They largely did not give students lessons on privacy and security. Some educators felt such lessons were not necessary; others found it difficult to make such lessons resonate with their students.

What are the implications of this work? We see an opportunity for the HCI community and those who create educational technologies to help students develop privacy and security skills. This can include designing “teachable moments” into technologies, such as prompts that ask students to think about where their data goes when they submit something online. These are not meant to replace privacy lessons, but to spark conversations between students, teachers, and parents as well as to help students think about privacy during their everyday interactions with digital technology. School districts and teacher training programs should educate teachers about digital privacy and security issues. Finally, the HCI and other communities must grapple with broader tensions about the datafication of education and its concomitant privacy and security concerns.

Read the CHI 2019 paper for more details!

Citation: Priya C. Kumar, Marshini Chetty, Tamara L. Clegg, and Jessica Vitak. 2019. Privacy and Security Considerations For Digital Technology Use in Elementary Schools. In Proceedings of the 37th Annual ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems

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CHI 2019 Paper On Digital Technology Use in Elementary Schools Accepted

Our paper, with fantastic collaborators Priya Kumar, Tammy Clegg, and Jessica Vitak, has been accepted to CHI 2019!  This paper investigates how elementary school teachers consider privacy and security for digital technology use.  A summary blog post will be posted closer to the conference!

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Contextual Integrity Symposium 2018 Report Available

We recently held the Symposium for Applications of Contextual Integrity in September 2018. The full report for the symposium is now available within a related blog post here.

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Participatory Design with Children, Tweens, and Teens at SOUPS 2018

Recently, we held a workshop at the SOUPS 2018 conference on Participatory Design (PD) with children, tweens, and teens. To read more about the workshop, please check out this related post.

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User Perceptions of Smart Home Internet of Things (IoT) Privacy

Posted on behalf of Serena Zheng, Noah Apthorpe, Marshini Chetty, and Nick Feamster.

Our work on “User Perceptions of Smart Home Internet of Things (IoT) Privacy” will be presented at the ACM Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing (CSCW) on November 6th, 2018. We briefly summarize our findings below.

What did we do? Smart home Internet of Things (IoT) devices are rapidly increasing in popularity, with more households including Internet-connected appliances that continuously monitor user activities. We wanted to investigate how users perceive the privacy implications of smart home technology and what role privacy considerations play in device purchasing and use decisions.

How did we do it? We conducted 11 interviews of early adopters of smart home technology in the United States, investigating their reasons for purchasing IoT devices, perceptions of smart home privacy risks, and actions taken to protect their privacy from entities external to the home who create, manage, track, or regulate IoT devices and/or their data.

What did we find? We identified four common themes across interview responses:

  1. Convenience and connectedness are priorities for smart home device users. These values often outweigh other concerns about IoT devices, including obsolescence, security, and privacy.
  2. User opinions about who should have access to their smart home data (e.g., manufacturers, Internet service providers, and governments) depend on perceived benefit to the user.  
  3. User assumptions about privacy protections are contingent on their trust of IoT device manufacturers, although they do not know whether these companies actually perform data encryption or anonymization.
  4. Users are less concerned about privacy risks from devices, such as lightbulbs and thermostats, that do not record audio or video, despite research showing that metadata from such devices can be used to infer home occupancy, work routines, sleeping patterns, and other user activities.

What are the implications of this work? These themes motivate recommendations for smart home device designers, researchers, regulators, and industry standards bodies. Participants’ desires for convenience and trust in IoT device manufacturers limit their willingness to take action to verify or enforce smart home data privacy. This means that privacy notifications and settings must be exceptionally clear and convenient, especially for smart home devices without screens. Improved cybersecurity and privacy regulation, combined with industry standards outlining best privacy practices, would also reduce the burden on users to manage their own privacy. We encourage follow-up studies examining the effects of smart home devices on privacy between individuals within a household and comparing perceptions of smart home privacy in different countries.

For more details about our interview findings and corresponding recommendations, please read this related blog post or the full paper.

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Upcoming Creativity/HCI/Design Speakers at Princeton

Interested in learning about creativity in design? Don’t forget to attend Keith Sawyer’s lecture tomorrow, on Tuesday October 9 at 4:30pm in the Friend Center, Convocation Room. Keith is being hosted by the Keller Center and represents one of many speakers we endeavor to bring to campus.

On that note, save the date, on November 8, 2018, Elizabeth Churchill,  director of User Experience (UX) at Google, will be coming to give a talk at Princeton as part of a celebration of World Usability day.

The talk will be held at the Arthur Lewis Auditorium, Robertson Hall from 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM. In the morning, there will also be a panel on careers in User Experience (UX) design composed of Princeton graduates who now work in UX careers. The panel will be held at the Convocation Room, Friend Center from 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM.

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