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Verena Distler: Mechanisms of Manipulation: How Technology Users Interact with Manipulative and Deceptive Communication

7. May @ 12:15 13:45

When people use technology, they are regularly exposed to manipulative or deceptive communication, which frequently leads to behavioral outcomes with various negative consequences. Social engineering attacks, such as phishing, are an impactful example. Despite training efforts, people struggle to recognize social engineering attacks and take protective behaviors. This talk will discuss the processes that lead to adverse behavioral outcomes for individuals in the face of manipulative or deceptive communication and show how interdisciplinary approaches can provide insights into possible mitigation strategies.

Verena Distler is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of the Bundeswehr Munich, Germany. Her research at the intersection of psychology, human-computer interaction, and security/privacy uses social science research methods to understand the interplay between people and technology, focusing on security-related and deceptive interactions with technology. She uses these insights to develop human-centered solutions against cyber threats. Dr. Distler earned her PhD in psychology at the University of Luxembourg, focusing on human-computer interaction and human-centered security. During her PhD, Dr. Distler was a visiting researcher at Carnegie Mellon University’s Cylab. Previously, she obtained a master’s degree in social sciences at the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon in France.

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