Presentation: Robot Social Engineering: Social Engineering Using Physical Robots

Track: Trust, Safety, & Security

Location: Empire Complex, 7th fl.

Duration: 1:40pm - 2:30pm

Day of week: Tuesday

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Physical robots, such as Roombas, Baxter, Pepper, and many others, can make use of social abilities such as authority, persuasion, empathy, and so on. These social abilities can be used by robots to social engineer humans into doing or saying things that are not in their best interest. This talk will cover some of the capabilities of physical robots, related human-robot interaction research, and the interfaces that can be used by a robot to social engineer humans. Come discuss the security, privacy, and ethical implications of social robots, the interfaces used to control them, and the techniques that can be used to prevent robot social engineering attacks.

Speaker: Brittany Postnikoff

Computer Security and Privacy / Human-Robot Interaction Researcher

Brittany is a Computer Systems Analyst (Robotics and Embedded Systems) with GRIMM. Prior to joining GRIMM, Brittany was a researcher in the Cryptography, Security, and Privacy (CrySP) lab at the University of Waterloo where she worked to establish and study the field of Robot Social Engineering. She has also held a position as a researcher in both the Human-Computer Interaction and Autonomous Agents laboratories at the University of Manitoba where she studied Human-Computer Interaction, Human-Robot Interaction, and robotics.

Find Brittany Postnikoff at


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