A Data-Driven Reflection on 36 Years of Security and Privacy Research


Aniqua Baset and Tamara Denning, University of Utah

Long Preliminary Work Paper


Meta-research---research about research---allows us, as a community, to examine trends in our research and make informed decisions regarding the course of our future research activities. Additionally, overviews of past research are particularly useful for researchers or conferences new to the field. In this work we use topic modeling to identify topics within the field of security and privacy research using the publications of the IEEE Symposium on Security & Privacy (1980-2015), the ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security (1993-2015), the USENIX Security Symposium (1993-2015), and the Network and Distributed System Security Symposium (1997-2015). We analyze and present data via the perspective of topics trends and authorship. We believe our work serves to contextualize the academic field of computer security and privacy research via one of the first data-driven analyses. An interactive visualization of the topics and corresponding publications is available at https://secprivmeta.net.

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@inproceedings {238240,
author = {Aniqua Baset and Tamara Denning},
title = {A {Data-Driven} Reflection on 36 Years of Security and Privacy Research},
booktitle = {12th USENIX Workshop on Cyber Security Experimentation and Test (CSET 19)},
year = {2019},
address = {Santa Clara, CA},
url = {https://www.usenix.org/conference/cset19/presentation/baset},
publisher = {USENIX Association},
month = aug,