cii Research Area: Trustworthy Internet-based Systems

Who would enjoy access to untrustworthy information, services, or apps on the internet? Nobody. Our research in the area trustworthy internet-based systems focuses on creating the foundational knowledge, design solutions, and approaches to make it more likely that individuals and organizational stakeholders find and consume the information, services, and apps they can trust on the internet. Put differently, our research in this area makes the internet more enjoyable for all its users.


Selected Research Perspectives

Information Privacy

Without privacy we would not have common good–focused political governance structures such as democracy. Hence, information privacy is a corner-stone for sustainable and trustworthy internet-based systems. In the cii research group, we take a systems perspective on privacy. While keeping other perspectives on privacy (eg, data protection, confidentiality, anonymity, education, literacy) in mind, we investigate privacy from the perspective of supportive and consumer-centered IS design. One key overarching research question is: How can we assure that IS gain capabilities and design features to adapt and cater to the diverse, context-dependent, and uncertain privacy expectations of their users and other stakeholders.

Information Security & Data Protection

We from the cii research group take a socio-technical perspective on information security and data protection. From a technical perspective, we examine how to design secure systems and assess whether they are continuously secure and reliable. Our research highlights relate to the design of novel certifications and related auditing techniques to (continuously) assess the security and data protection of cloud services and educational systems. From a social perspective, we analyze how organizations internalize security practices and individuals interact with security countermeasures. Among others, we revealed that security structures established by the organization can backfire, making employees rather complacent regarding security taking. Considering organizations actions and employees’ security behavior offers fruitful opportunities for developing novel security countermeasures, which can be transferred to the industry. Taking a socio-perspective on information security and data protection provides a unique and novel perspective because it complements research endeavors in theoretical and technical computer science.

Trustworthy Emerging Technologies

We also focus on building trust in internet-based and emerging technologies, including AI, cloud-, fog- and edge-computing, and distributed ledger technology. Emerging technologies like AI and fog services come with high uncertainty and ambiguity but also auspicious value propositions, providing a fruitful ground for novel research. We examine how organizations can design and harness these technologies and reveal potential challenges (e.g., AI impermanence). For instance, we examined cloud-based AI services and uncovered trade-offs that organizations face when designing and provisioning these novel services. Our research emphasizes that emerging technologies not only impact organizations but transform societies and economies. The introduction of ChatGPT, for example, disrupted the educational sector and calls for future research on how students and teachers deal with AI-generated content in a constructive but self-critical manner. To increase users and organizational decision makers’ willingness to adopt novel technologies and mitigate their uncertainties, building trust is inevitable. Our research takes a holistic approach on trust by examining how trust emerges (e.g., through trust transfer), the impact of key antecedents to foster trust (e.g., accountability), and trust-related consequences (e.g., technology usage and adoption).


Selected Publications

A design theory for transparency of information privacy practices
Dehling, T.; Sunyaev, A.
2023. Information Systems Research, accepted manusript, 1–45. doi:10.1287/isre.2019.0239
Achieving Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence: Multi-Source Trust Transfer in Artificial Intelligence-capable Technology
Renner, M.; Lins, S.; Söllner, M.; Thiebes, S.; Sunyaev, A.
2021. Building Sustainability and Resilience with IS: A Call fpr Action : ICIS 2021 proceedings ; 42nd International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS), AIS eLibrary (AISeL)
Trustworthy artificial intelligence
Thiebes, S.; Lins, S.; Sunyaev, A.
2021. Electronic markets, 31 (2), 447–464. doi:10.1007/s12525-020-00441-4
Consumer Perceptions of Online Behavioral Advertising
Dehling, T.; Zhang, Y.; Sunyaev, A.
2019. 2019 IEEE 21st Conference on Business Informatics (CBI), Moscow, Russia, 15-17 July 2019, 345–354, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). doi:10.1109/CBI.2019.00046
Trust is Good, Control is Better: Creating Secure Clouds by Continuous Auditing
Lins, S.; Schneider, S.; Sunyaev, A.
2018. IEEE transactions on cloud computing, 6 (3), 890–903. doi:10.1109/TCC.2016.2522411

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