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Applying Psychological Research to Cyber Security Challenges

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Friday, January 31, 2020
  • Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

Project Description

An increasingly common threat to organisations is cyber-attack, including issues such as theft of customer data and ransomware attacks. Within cyber security, it is accepted that the question is not if an organisation will be breached, but instead when. This is demonstrated by the fact that even the largest and most technologically sophisticated organisations in the world such as Google and Facebook have suffered major cyber security breaches. An element within many cyber-attacks is the role of the individual employees within the organisation who, through action or inaction, may unintentionally facilitate cyber-attacks. Research in psychological and behavioural sciences is highly relevant to these issues; yet there is an interdisciplinary gap between this evidence base and the application of such research to cyber security challenges. This PhD studentship seeks to address this by inviting proposals under several broad themes where there is potential to develop both theoretical knowledge and the evidence base.

The broad themes that this PhD studentship could explore are:
- The role of psychological resilience in cyber-attacks; including ownership of resilience within organisations
- Implementation and assessment of behaviour change strategies within cyber security settings
- The influence of context on cyber security behaviours and attitudes, i.e. workplace vs home
- Decision making by cyber attackers. This could include research to determine if the availability and quality of information (and misinformation) on networks has an effect on the decision making process of cyber attackers, with a view to informing network security defensive approaches (e.g. use of deterrence or misdirection).

How to apply:

Applications are made via our website using the Apply Online button below. If you have an enquiry about this project please contact us via the Email NOW button below, however your application will only be processed once you have submitted an application form as opposed to emailing your CV to us.

The PhD Studentships are open to UK nationals. Candidates for a PhD Studentship should demonstrate outstanding qualities and be motivated to complete a PhD in 4 years and must demonstrate:

• A 1st class honours degree and/or a relevant Master’s degree with distinction or equivalent.

Funding Notes

Funded candidates will receive a maintenance grant of £15,000 per year to contribute towards living expenses during the course of your research, as well as a fee waiver for 36 months.
Due to the nature of this PhD it is restricted to applicants who are UK nationals.

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