WebScience Conference and Twitter Cybercrime

A couple of weeks ago, I was at the WebScience conference in Bloomington, Indiana. I had submitted a position paper about how to proceed with research on cybercrime and cyberwarfare in the context of Twitter to the Cybercrime / Cyberwarfare workshop which then got accepted.

My paper is titled “Cybercrime on Twitter: Shifting the User Back into Focus”. The main point I am trying to make in this publication is that research on cybercrime and fraud on Twitter has mostly been related to (i) how to detect spam and hacked accounts or (ii) how do cyber-criminals behave. However, the hacked user—as a central element in this field —is mostly neglected in today’s research. Therefore, I propose to shift the focus back onto the user and his or her needs. From my perspective, this requires the following points:

  • Study user behavior: we have to understand users in order to prevent future hacks and toprovide better support mechanisms (e.g., understand how a user’s trust into a social network changes after he or she has been hacked or how a user perceives the risk of being hacked)
  • Support the user: this point is about how to inform and support the user in regards to hacks and is tightly knit to the previous point as it requires a deeper understanding of the user. Supporting the user incorporates both the prevention of hacks due to increased awareness regarding hacks and a better understanding about e.g., how to recapture a hacked account.
  • Get the big picture: we have to not only focus on single aspects of security and user analysis, but to regain an understanding about the user experience and perception as a whole in regards to fraud on Twitter.
  • Get interdisciplinary: in order to see and analyze the user and his behavior from different perspectives, we have to get interdisciplinary. Therefore, we have to get together with psychology, social sciences, data mining experts and also human-
    computer-interaction specialists.
  • Work together: this is all about fostering cooperation 🙂 (e.g., sharing source code, experiences and also data between researchers)

If you are interesting in tackling any of the above points with me—just get in touch 🙂

  • Eva Zangerle and Günther Specht. Cybercrime on Twitter: Shifting the User Back into Focus. In Proceedings of the WebScience Cybercrime / Cyberwar Workshop, co-located with WebSci14, 2014.
    [BibTeX] [Download PDF]
    title = {{Cybercrime on Twitter: Shifting the User Back into Focus}},
    author = {Eva Zangerle and G\"{u}nther Specht},
    year = {2014},
    booktitle = {{Proceedings of the WebScience Cybercrime / Cyberwar Workshop, co-located with WebSci14}},