Charles Weir (Lancaster University)

"Engaging Software Developers: Approaches to Research with Professional Teams"

Copyright: Charles Weir

Abstract: GDPR, Facebook, Syniverse, Experian, T-Mobile, Heartbleed, WannaCry, E-Payment Fraud: public and business appreciation of the dangers of cyber security and privacy issues have increased massively recently. Meanwhile cloud container-based delivery and agile development have made external checks insufficient to ensure security; developers and product management must now be involved, requiring skills and knowledge not traditionally taught to cybersecurity experts. This creates opportunities for research organizations to contribute largely to solutions; and a demand from industry for anything that can help. But how can we as researchers ride this wave of demand? His talk will provide a basis to consider this question. He will introduce current work at Lancaster University: the building and testing of intervention packages to help development teams improve security. Charles Weir will explore techniques to engage such teams, describe surprising outcomes from workshops, and discuss research techniques to evaluate and improve such techniques.

Biography: Charles Weir is passionate about improving the skills of teams of professional software developers. As a researcher at Lancaster University, he now studies the cutting-edge topic of developer-centred security, currently focusing on the development of innovative health-related systems. Previously he set up the mobile application development company, Penrillian, and ran it successfully for 15 years, employing up to thirty people and with a total turnover well over 30 million pounds. Charles also helped introduce object-oriented and agile methods to Europe, and was technical lead for the world’s first smartphone.

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