Introducing Swiss Cyber Storm 2017 Speaker Daniela Oliveira
There is a shift in the world of IT security. Back in the 1990ties, people thought security was a purely technical if not mathematical problem. In one of his more famous quotes, Bruce Schneier stated that having written “Applied Cryptography” he really thought, that security was solved since he had just told the world how to apply encryption.
As it turns out, people started to apply encryption but the overall security did not improve and Bruce Schneier realized there were more topics to cover and more books to write if he wanted to make the world a safer place.
So, the technical field of IT security has opened itself to new influences and new ideas. I see this development where ever I look. But it struck me again, when I looked over the work of Professor Daniela Oliveira from the University of Florida.
Daniela Oliveira, Professor at the University of Florida
Daniela started out with research on performance in distributed video on demand systems. She then shifted into the security domain and worked on malware detection in virtual machines, kernel extensions and other hard technical security topics.
That was a period when Donald Knuth came to join her class and participate in a discussion on buffer overflows. Daniela received an impressive collection of grants and awards that could fill a blog post on its own.
But then, slowly, she started to bring heuristics, behaviour models and psychology into the mix and her research turned to applied security and human interactions with computers.
I had the pleasure to attend a presentation she gave about her research. The talk centered around the susceptibility of older adults to spear-phishing emails. Daniela Oliveira was able to show that elderly populations are more likely to fall for certain types of phishing emails, especially when they hit the right tune and align with the life domains of the victims.
Daniela Oliveira with some of her students
We entered a conversation and I asked if she thought her research would also apply to the susceptibility of C-level management to spear-phishing mails as this would help to explain some of the biggest financial frauds that happened in recent years in Switzerland and abroad.
Daniela confirmed that impression and we are now talking about the details of her presentation for our Swiss Cyber Storm conference.
Daniela Oliveira is a professor at the Florida Institute for Cyber Security (FICS). She has a family and owns a dog. She tries to shield her Brazilian mother from falling for online scams and directs a diversity program at the University of Florida. Professor Daniela Oliveira is a skyrocketing career scientist and we are very happy to welcome here in Lucerne.
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