Cooperative Privacy and Security: Learning from People with Visual Impairments and Their Allies


Jordan Hayes, Smirity Kaushik, Charlotte Emily Price, and Yang Wang, Syracuse University


To better inform privacy/security designs for people with disabilities, we “shadowed” people with visual impairments and their allies (e.g., friends, family members, and professional helpers) for two days followed by an exit interview. Our study results provide rich and nuanced accounts of how people with visual impairments enact their privacy/security in daily life, influenced by both their interactions with their allies and multiple (marginalized) dimensions of their identities such as different disabilities. We also found that people with visual impairments often work closely with their allies to protect their privacy and security in a cooperative manner. However, they were also thoughtful about who they would ask for help in part due to privacy reasons, even if they are trustworthy family members. We discuss ideas for future research and design, particularly a need for designing mechanisms or tools that facilitate cooperative privacy management (e.g., between people with visual impairments and their allies).

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@inproceedings {238293,
author = {Jordan Hayes and Smirity Kaushik and Charlotte Emily Price and Yang Wang},
title = {Cooperative Privacy and Security: Learning from People with Visual Impairments and Their Allies},
booktitle = {Fifteenth Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security (SOUPS 2019)},
year = {2019},
isbn = {978-1-939133-05-2},
address = {Santa Clara, CA},
pages = {1--20},
url = {},
publisher = {USENIX Association},
month = aug

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