Visible to the public Leveraging the Effects of Cognitive Function on Input Device Analytics to Improve Security - October 2016Conflict Detection Enabled

Public Audience
Purpose: To highlight project progress. Information is generally at a higher level which is accessible to the interested public. All information contained in the report (regions 1-3) is a Government Deliverable/CDRL.

PI(s):  David L. Roberts, Robert St. Amant
Researchers: Alok Goel, Ignacio X. Dominguez, Jayant Dhawan



  • Human Behavior - Our work addresses understanding human behavior through observations of input device usage. The basic principles we are developing will enable new avenues for characterizing risk and identifying malicious (or accidental) uses of systems that lead to security problems. The ultimate goal of our work is the development of a novel class of security proofs that we call "Human Subtlety Proofs" (HSPs). HSPs combine the unobtrusiveness of Human Observational Proofs with the interactivity of Human Interactive Proofs, which hopefully will lead to more secure interactions.



  • Our tool for visualizing cognitive phenomena during user interface interaction has been used extensively to hone in on evidence of cognition's effects on input device usage. The results have provided key metrics for identifying changes in cognition that reflect changes in task completion strategies that may be reflective of insecure behavior by users. 

  • We have begun development of a new framework for making interface-level changes during task-based interaction on the linux command line. This new framework is the basis for the implementation of the first Human Subtlety Proofs. The framework runs in a web browser and connects to a standard linux machine, and it will facilitate the evaluation of these proofs.