KYBS3040 Cyber Security Psychology (5 cr)

Study level:
Advanced studies
Grading scale:
Responsible organisation:
Faculty of Information Technology
Curriculum periods:
2020-2021, 2021-2022, 2022-2023, 2023-2024


The psychology of the user is important, but has been largely overlooked for many years. Through understanding the user (be it a home-user, customer and/or employee), and understanding how and why they engage with cyber security, will only bring positive changes to organizational security, and to public safety. This course provides an overview of how the psychology of users are influenced by cyber security, and how cyber security is effected by the psychology of users. Cognitive, behavioral, social, and neural aspects will be examined, with the interaction with cyber security from an individual user perspective and from perspective of the user within the organizational context.

Topics include:

  • Introduction to user psychology
  • Individual differences and security
  • Societal inclusiveness
  • Human-computer interaction
  • Security-related technostress
  • Psychology and authentication
  • Neurosecurity
  • Psychology of social engineering
  • Psychology: online world vs. physical world
Students will be expected to attend/watch lectures, undertake the assignments, and read from the texts recommended for the course.

Learning outcomes

  1. The student will gain a good understanding of the psychology of users; the basic theories and principles in psychology that could be applied to the user interaction with cyber security.
  2. The student will have a good knowledge of the key issues users have to face while engaging with security, and the issues cyber security professionals have to face when attempting to improve users’ security hygiene, within the home and organizational context.
  3. The student will gain knowledge and understanding of key contemporary research topics in the field of cyber security, from the psychological perspective. 

Additional information

This course will be available on campus and online

Description of prerequisites

It is recommended you have already completed the Information Security Management course (TJTSM51).   

Study materials

Study materials will be a combination of academic articles and other materials available online, including, industry reports, news articles, and online videos.

Completion methods

Method 1

This course will be available on campus and online. Students will be expected to attend/watch lectures, undertake the assignments and final exam, and read from the key texts recommended in the course.
Evaluation criteria:
Online quiz and case studies (30%) or presentation (30%) and final exam (70%)
Select all marked parts
Parts of the completion methods

Participation in teaching (5 cr)

Participation in teaching
Grading scale: