Security Constructs Database

This website contains the findings of a small research project into the methodolgies of security survey research.

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The property that is being measured through a one or multiple questions. Virtually any survey uses constructs, and in many cases constructs are reused from existing literature. We have identified 799 constructs and list their origins, availibility of questions and validation.

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We have grouped the constructs according to the methodology of (insert link to paper) into 92 categories.

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In total, we collected 699 relevant publications. Publications are analysed for their methodology, constructs and validations.

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Humans are central to information security. Their interaction with technology gives rise to the information that is to be protected. Many organisation would not exist and economies would be different if the productive use of information were not happening. Because humans are the creators, managers and beneficiaries of this information, the study of information security obviously includes the study of the human.

Frequently these studies rely on well-understood tools: employee surveys to identify behaviour issues, or measure the effectiveness of interventions to change behaviour. In this project we focus on the questions that are used to study aspects of human behaviour through surveys. Psychologists have utilised surveys to study human behaviour for decades before information security became a necessity, and many of the questions and techniques are borrowed from that field. The central element that we focus on in this project is the (survey) construct, which is an explanatory variable which is not directly observable. It is measured through one or many questions. However, it is often not apparent what has been used previously and what the sources of the questions and constructs have. This makes it difficult to establish prior results and previous findings of the constructs. Further, we have noticed that often researchers and practitioners alike will re-invent the wheel, as they are unaware of existing constructs. This resources will attempt to aid their tasks.