User-Friendly Privacy-Preserving Photo Sharing on Online Social Networks

Keywords: Usable Privacy, Photo sharing, Online Social Networking, Usable Security, Usability


A variety of online social networking (OSNs) services facilitates users to share a huge amount of their personal information such as photos. On the other hand, users may unintentionally reveal their photos to other audiences. Therefore, users of OSNs strive to protect their photos with existing privacy management mechanisms. Moreover, users need adequate feedback to understand their privacy preferences in photo sharing services. In this paper, the authors present a new visualization mechanism called Visual Privacy Management Policy (VPMP) in order to simplify the configuring privacy settings when users of OSNs share their photos with others. Also, this solution aims to address the shortcomings of privacy settings policies of photo sharing in OSNs. Furthermore, the solution employs a social graph and circles for visualizing when, where, how and with whom users will share their photos. So, this solution provides users a comprehensible and effective way to determine their privacy settings. The authors evaluate the visual privacy management policy (VPMP) for photo sharing with a user study that compared our solution with the user interface of photo-sharing on Facebook. The obtained findings provide quantitative evidence regarding the applicability of VPMP in terms of usability and privacy protection.


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Author Biography

Khalid Alemerien, Tafila Technical University, Tafila, 6610, Jordan

Khalid Alemerien is an assistant professor of Software Engineering at the Computer Science and Information Technology Department, Faculty of Sciences, Tafila Technical University. He was awarded a PhD in Software Engineering from North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND, USA. His research fields include Software Testing, Usable Security, Human-Computer Interaction, Complexity Metrics in User Interface Design, GUI Testing, Usability, Visualization, and Privacy and Social Networking. He is a reviewer for some of the scientific journals in his research area such as Information Systems Management Journal, Displays Journal (Elsevier), Computers and Security (Elsevier). Also, he was a member of the organizing or technical committees of UbiComp2016, ICACDS-2016, ICICS2016, ICSEKD2016, SDMA2016, CYPER2017, CYPER2019, IEEE (ICPET’19), ICACDS 2020, IOTSMS2020, and others.


Zephoria,, February 2020.

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