Human Aspects of Cyber Security (HACS)

The Human Aspects of Cyber Security (HACS) is a collaborative team from The University of Adelaide and the Defence Science and Technology Group (DSTG), which has been engaging with projects about phishing, human vulnerabilities to social engineering, employee compliance with information security policies, and related cyber security fields since 2008. HACS' focus is on supporting organisations and management in information and cyber security.

HACS has been awarded several research grants, the most recently completed being Premier’s Research and Industry Fund (PRIF) grant from the SA government to develop an Information Security Auditing Tool (the HAIS-Q).

What we do

  • We research the human aspects of cyber security including people’s knowledge, attitude and behaviour associated with information security
  • We conduct tests, experiments, surveys, interviews, and focus groups with a range of partners including Australian Government agencies, private industry and the general public

Previous work

  • Development of the Human Aspects of Information Security Questionnaire (HAIS-Q) to determine employee Information Security Awareness (ISA)
  • Assessment of vulnerabilities associated with naïve and accidental human computer-based behaviour of employees
  • Assessment of people’s susceptibility to phishing attacks
  • Impact of organisational culture on ISA

Key contact

Dr Malcolm Pattinson


Study Cyber Security Management

The Graduate Certificate of Cyber Security Management is designed to meet the demand for cyber security managers in various sectors including public, NGO, law enforcement, and commercial. It provides a strong analytical and leadership framework to understand the challenges, problems and solutions of cyber security from a range of professional perspectives. 

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