Usable Security – Users are not your enemy

Introduction

Often overlooked, usability turned out to be one of the most important aspects of security. Usable systems enable users to accomplish their goals with increased productivity, less errors and security incidents. And It stills seems to be the exception rather than the rule.

When it comes to software, many people believe there is an fundamental tradeoff between security and usability. A choice between one of them has to be done. The belief is – make it more secure – and immediately – things become harder to use.

It’s a never-ending challenge – security and usability experts arguing about which one is more important. And some more people of the engineering and marketing department get involved giving their views and trying to convince the others. Finding the right balance between security and usability is without a doubt a challenging task.

The serious problem: User experience can suffer as digital products become more secure. In other words: the more secure you make something, the less secure it becomes. Why?
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A Rant about Smart Home Security Usability

(written by Lena Krächan & Tobias Schneider)

Introduction

Living in today’s age of mobility and internet of things, residents of modern houses can easily interact with their smart homes. A smart home system is the thing to have. You can dim the lights, regulate the temperature, automatically open windows and doors and manage and manipulate even more things and devices.
At the moment there is a huge interest in the area of smart home systems. Many different providers offer systems and protocols.
Therefore, it is not that simple to find the perfect solution for your own house. First of all, all systems differ from each other. Hence, you need to know what kind of services you want to have. Secondly, security always plays a critical role. Are there any benefits or drawbacks when using a certain system?

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