I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Media and Information, of the College of Communication Arts and Sciences at Michigan State University. Some keywords to describe my research are: digital privacy, inferences, social norms, algorithms, big data, sociotechnical systems.
My research focuses on human-centered aspects of data privacy. I study how people reason and make choices about data collection and inferences enabled by digital technologies, to better understand why people struggle to manage their privacy, and to discover new ways to help people gain more appropriate control over information about them.
For example, it is hard enough for end users of computing systems to be aware of the data that is collected about them, but it’s even harder to understand how that data can be used to categorize their personal characteristics or activities, to make predictions about their future behavior and interests, and to infer sensitive, private information. I’m working to discover ways to help people take back some agency over the data they provide to the apps and platforms they use, so that they will have a way to influence what these systems can do and how they affect the world.
Some things I’ve been up to recently…
I published a paper at the 2022 Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security (SOUPS) in August, titled Normative and Non-Social Beliefs about Sensor Data: Implications for Collective Privacy Management.
Many of the results from my 2012 paper with Rick Wash and Brandon Brooks, Stories as Information Lessons About Security, were replicated by another research group. I’m a co-author on the paper – I provided our 2012 data and analyses and helped with the writing – which also appears at SOUPS 2022: Replication: Stories as Informal Lessons about Security.