Successful PhD defence by Prashant S. Dhotre

Successful PhD defence by Prashant S. Dhotre

CMI congratulates Prashant Shantaram Dhotre with successful defence of his PhD thesis titled Systematic Analysis and Visualization of Privacy Policies of Online Services

From left: Jari Porras, Lene Sørensen, Prashant S. Dhotre and James Irvine

Abstract

Using mobile and wireless communications technologies, service providers can provide numerous services to Internet users. However, to gain additional value, the common business practice of service providers is to collect and analyse user information without a clear consent from the users. This constitutes a major privacy risk. Although the practices are usually specified in the form of privacy policies (terms of use), these documents are time-consuming to read and complicated to understand, and users do not really know what happens to their data. Hence, there is a clear need to increase the users’ privacy awareness and assist them in understanding the content of privacy policies.

In this thesis, a new Privacy Policy Elucidator Tool (PPET) is proposed and implemented. It is capable of classifying, summarizing and visualizing the contents of the privacy policies of service providers. Using machine learning, the tool extracts and summarizes the policy content, provides a graphic visualization of it, and assists the users to learn and understand the practices of service providers, thereby enhancing their privacy awareness.

Assessment Committee: Associate Professor Lene Sørensen, AAU, (chairman); Professor Jari Porras, Lappeenranta University of Technology; Reader Dr. James M. Irvine, University of Strathclyde

Supervisor: Associate Professor Henning Olesen, AAU. Moderator: Associate Professor Iwona Windekilde, AAU.

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