Evil Interfaces: Violating the User

Presented at The Last HOPE (2008), July 18, 2008, 1 p.m. (60 minutes)

In a perfect world, interfaces help users accomplish tasks quickly and efficiently. However, in the real world, interfaces are often designed to manipulate users into behaving according to the designer's calculated and suspect intent. Malicious interfaces abound on the web - employing trickery, misdirection of browsing, forced viewing of advertisements, and even animations designed to trigger epileptic seizures. Evil interfaces are seen virtually anywhere profit is at stake, from desktop applications and websites to gas pumps and toothpaste dispensers. This talk explores malicious interface techniques both on and off the desktop, and aims to energize the audience to pursue positive solutions. You'll leave with a better awareness and understanding of the problem, increased resistance to attack and ideas for generating solutions.


  • Greg Conti as Gregory Conti
    Greg Conti is an assistant professor of Computer Science at the United States Military Academy, West Point, New York. His research includes security data visualization and web-based information disclosure. He is the author of Security Data Visualization (No Starch Press) and the forthcoming Googling Security (Addison-Wesley). His work can be found at http://www.gregconti.com and http://www.rumint.org.