Folk Risk Analysis: Factors Influencing Security Analysts’ Interpretation of Risk


Andrew M’manga, Shamal Faily, and John McAlaney, Bournemouth University; Christopher Williams, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory


There are several standard approaches to risk analysis recommended for use in information security, however, the actual application of risk analysis by security analysts follows an opaque mix of standard risk analysis procedures and adaptations based on an analyst's understanding of risk. We refer to these approaches as Folk Risk Analysis. To understand folk risk analysis, we present the results of a study where Distributed Cognition and Grounded Theory were used to elicit factors influencing risk interpretation by security analysts, and the constrained conditions to risk decision making they encounter.

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@inproceedings {205819,
title = {Folk Risk Analysis: Factors Influencing Security {Analysts{\textquoteright}} Interpretation of Risk},
booktitle = {Thirteenth Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security (SOUPS 2017)},
year = {2017},
address = {Santa Clara, CA},
url = {},
publisher = {USENIX Association},
month = jul,