Mahmood Sharif

Mahmood Sharif

Mahmood Sharif

Mahmood Sharif is a researcher at NortonLifeLock Research Group. His research interests span a wide range of computer security and privacy related areas, including adversarial machine learning, human factors, and online anonymity and censorship.

During his Ph.D. studies in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and the CyLab Security and Privacy Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, Mahmood was awarded the CyLab Presidential Fellowship (twice) and the NortonLifeLock Research Group Graduate Fellowship. Prior to Carnegie Mellon, Mahmood received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Computer Science from the University of Haifa.

Selected Academic Papers

A Field Study of Computer-Security Perceptions Using Anti-Virus Customer-Support Chats

In Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI 2019)
To identify needs for improvement in security products, we study security concerns raised in Norton Security customer support chats. We found that many consumers face technical support scams and are susceptible to them. Findings also show the value of customer support centers in that 96% of customers that reach out for support in relation to scams have not paid the scammers

Training Older Adults to Resist Scams with Fraud Bingo and Scam Detection Challenges

In Proceedings of the 2020 CHI Workshop on Designing Interactions for the Ageing Populations - Addressing Global Challenges
Older adults are disproportionately affected by scams, many of which target them specifically. We present Fraud Bingo, an intervention designed by WISE \& Healthy Aging Center in Southern California prior to 2012, that has been played by older adults throughout the United States. We also present the Scam Defender Obstacle Course (SDOC), an interactive web application that tests a user's ability to identify scams, and subsequently teaches them how to recognize the scams. SDOC is patterned after existing phishing-recognition training tools for working professionals. We present the results of running a workshop with 17 senior citizens, where we performed a controlled study that and used SDOC to measure the effectiveness of Fraud Bingo. We outline the difficulties several participants had with completing SDOC, which indicate that tools like SDOC should be tailored to the needs of older adults.

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