Human Factors in Cybersecurity

Semester: 2020 Winter
For: Master
Format: Seminar
Credit Points: 3 CP

In this seminar, students will be exposed to a researcher’s bread and butter, i.e., diving into the research of the last decade in Usable Security and Privacy and getting to know the process of publishing a scientific paper.

Simulating a computer science conference’s publishing process, you will critically read and review papers, give short presentations and discuss the papers with other participants.

The topics will include (but are not limited to) usability challenges of authentication systems (including passwords), warning messages, TLS, permission systems, privacy for end-users and secure programming and configuration of computer systems.

Important Dates

2020-10-13 14:00-15:30 Meeting [1] Intro Session
2020-10-18 23:59 Deadline HotCRP Registration
2020-10-23 23:59 Deadline Paper Bidding (HotCRP)
2020-10-30 23:59 Deadline Read Papers
2020-11-03 14:00-15:30 Meeting [1] HowTo Session (Attendance mandatory)
2020-11-13 23:59 Deadline First Review (HotCRP)
2020-11-27 23:59 Deadline Second Review (HotCRP)
2020-11-30 Reviews available
2020-12-03 23:59 Deadline Submit Rebuttal (HotCRP)
2020-12-14 Meta-Review Assignment
2020-12-21 23:59 Deadline Submit Meta-Reviews (HotCRP)
2021-01-04 23:59 Deadline Submit Lightning Talk Slides (Email)
2021-01-12 14:00-16:00 Meeting [1] PC Meeting (Attendance mandatory)
2021-01-22 23:59 Deadline Submit Conference Slides (Email)
2021-01-26 14:00-16:00 Meeting [1] Conference (Attendance mandatory)

[1] Online, access details in StudIP.


The structure of this seminar aims to emulate a top tier IT security conference. To provide a balanced experience, all participating students will both act as “authors” and reviewer / program chair (PC).

As author:

  1. Submit “your” paper (due to time limitations: get assigned one of 3 already published papers).
  2. Defend “your” paper against 2 reviews in a rebuttal.
  3. Present “your” paper at the conference in a short presentation.

As program chair/reviewer:

  1. Write reviews for 2 other papers.
  2. Write a meta review (a summary of existing reviews + rebuttal) for 1 other paper.
  3. Present your meta review paper in a lightning talk and argue for/against accepting it.


Depending on the assignment, submission is either done via email or the HotCRP:

  • Email: Please include your name if it is not obvious from your address or submission.
  • HotCRP: Upload via web form in our submission system, remember to sign up before the deadline.


  • Grade consists of two written reviews, rebuttal, meta-review, lightning talk, and paper presentation.
  • Submitting assignments on time is mandatory for this seminar to function.
  • Presence in meetings/sessions is mandatory for this seminar to function.

Paper List