Cyber Influence and Cognitive Threats - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780128192047

Cyber Influence and Cognitive Threats

1st Edition

Editors: Vladlena Benson John McAlaney
Paperback ISBN: 9780128192047
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 27th September 2019
Page Count: 238
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In the wake of fresh allegations that personal data of Facebook users have been illegally used to influence the outcome of the US general election and the Brexit vote, the debate over manipulation of social big data continues to gain more momentum. Cyber Influence and Cognitive Threats addresses various emerging challenges in response to cyber security, examining cognitive applications in decision making, behaviour and basic human interaction. The book examines the role of psychology in cybersecurity by addressing each factor involved in the process: hackers, targets, cybersecurity practitioners, and the wider social context in which these groups operate.

Cyber Influence and Cognitive Threats covers a variety of topics including information systems, psychology, sociology, human resources, leadership, strategy, innovation, law, finance and others.

Key Features

  • Explains psychological factors inherent in machine learning and artificial intelligence
  • Explores attitudes towards data and privacy through the phenomena of digital hoarding and protection motivation theory
  • Discusses the role of social and communal factors in cybersecurity behaviour and attitudes
  • Investigates the factors that determine the spread and impact of information and disinformation


Researchers in psychology who study human factors, human-computer interaction, and applied psych. Secondary market: professionals in computer science, engineering, tech development, cyber security, and policy-making

Table of Contents

1. Cyber Influence and Behavioural analytics: Emerging Trends
2. Dynamic target audiences populated by cyber personalities
3. Towards an integrated socio-technical approach for designing adaptive Privacy-Aware Services in Cloud computing
4. Nothing Up My Sleeve': Information Warfare and the Magical Mindset
5. Privacy Issues and Critical Infrastructure Protection
6. Social Media content and predictive models for cyber security: Overview and challenges
7. Digital Hoarding
8. A Review of Approaches to Increasing Security Awareness: Embedding Experience and Communal Learning
9. Understanding Users' Information Security Awareness and Intentions: A Full Nomology of Protection Motivation Theory
10. Social Big Data and its Integrity: The effect of trust and personality traits on organic reach of Facebook content
11. Implications of Social Influence for policy and practice


No. of pages:
© Academic Press 2020
Academic Press
Paperback ISBN:

About the Editor

Vladlena Benson

Vladlena Benson is Professor of Information Systems at the Aston Business School. She is a specialist in technology governance, risk and compliance (GRC) and a Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ)-certified Cyber Security Risk Management Frameworks practitioner. She is currently working with UK businesses on privacy and cyber security initiatives, such as the forthcoming General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and privacy compliance. Prof Benson’s research areas cover: information privacy; cyber victimisation; gender and culture differences in online behaviour; digital rights and the cyber vulnerability of young people. Her work also relates to religious orientation, digital behaviour and privacy on social media. She is a strong advocate for increasing diversity in the cyber security work force, and actively endeavours to bring more female talent into the digital economy. As part of her research, she currently runs a number of projects to help target the digital skills crisis – developing tools for opening up cyberspace entrepreneurship opportunities from an early age. As a result of her work in this area, Prof Benson was recognised at the Women in IT Awards 2017 for helping the development of career opportunities for women in cyber security.

Affiliations and Expertise

Professor, School of Computing and Engineering, University of West London, UK

John McAlaney

John McAlaney is a Chartered Psychologist, Chartered Scientist and Associate Professor of Psychology at Bournemouth University. He completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Stirling, his MSc at the University of Strathclyde and then his PhD at the University of West of Scotland in 2007. Dr. McAlaney's PhD was on the topic of social psychology and substance use, looking particularly at misperceptions of peer norms. Following this he worked on an AERC funded post-doc position at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine before moving onto a lecturing post at the University of Bradford in 2008. He joined the Department of Psychology at Bournemouth University in 2014. Since joining Bournemouth he has collaborated extensively with colleagues in the Department of Computing and Informatics to explore psychological factors of cyber security, including participation in hacking and hacktivism, group dynamics in cyber security actors and decision making processes in relation to phishing emails and other mediums. As part of this work he collaborates extensively with government, military and commercial organisations. In 2018 he led the authorship of the British Psychological Society’s briefing paper on the role of psychology in informing cybersecurity practices.

Affiliations and Expertise

Associate Professor of Psychology, Bournemouth University, UK

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