Security beliefs and barriers for novice Internet users
Computing, Health and Science
School of Computer and Security Science
End-users are now recognized as being at increased risk in online scenarios, with a range of threats that seek to specifically target them and exploit their systems. Novice users are particularly likely to face difficulties in this context, as their unfamiliarity with the technology can limit their ability to recognize the threats and understand the required protection. This paper presents the results from a qualitative study, arising from detailed interviews conducted with 20 novice users in order to assess their views and experiences with Internet security. The findings reveal a general awareness of the existence of threats, but less familiarity with the appropriate safeguards beyond a very basic level. Although users generally recognize that they have a responsibility for their own protection, they often appear unconcerned about the potential impacts of the problems. In other cases, they felt unable to address their concerns as a result of their lack of technical knowledge or obstacles posed by security tools.