Visible to the public Will the “Phisher-men” Reel you in? Assessing Individual Differences in a Phishing Detection Task

TitleWill the “Phisher-men” Reel you in? Assessing Individual Differences in a Phishing Detection Task
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of PublicationIn Press
AuthorsWelk, A., Zielinska, O., Tembe, R., Xe, G., Hong, K. W., Murphy-Hill, E., Mayhorn, C. B.
JournalInternational Journal of Cyber Behavior, Psychology, and Learning.
Keywordshuman factors, phishing attacks, psychology, Social Engineering

Phishing is an act of technology-based deception that targets individuals to obtain information. To minimize the number of phishing attacks, factors that influence the ability to identify phishing attempts must be examined. The present study aimed to determine how individual differences relate to performance on a phishing task. Undergraduate students completed a questionnaire designed to assess impulsivity, trust, personality characteristics, and Internet/security habits. Participants performed an email task where they had to discriminate between legitimate emails and phishing attempts. Researchers assessed performance in terms of correctly identifying all email types (overall accuracy) as well as accuracy in identifying phishing emails (phishing accuracy). Results indicated that overall and phishing accuracy each possessed unique trust, personality, and impulsivity predictors, but shared one significant behavioral predictor. These results present distinct predictors of phishing susceptibility that should be incorporated in the development of anti-phishing technology and training.

Citation Keynode-22552
Refereed DesignationRefereed

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