Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Computer Engineering and Sciences

First Advisor

Heather Crawford

Second Advisor

Meredith Carroll

Third Advisor

Eraldo Ribeiro

Fourth Advisor

Philip J. Bernhard


Rapid innovations in science and engineering have created a greater opportunity for disruptive technologies to be established at a faster rate. Less than a decade ago mobile, phones were a mere tool for communication, nowadays, we rely on their successors to remind us about our next appointment, what we need from the grocery store, or even where we parked our car. But this assistance comes with a cost; in order to help us, our devices rely on using our personal information like GPS, contacts list and personal notes, –in some cases more information than what the app needs. While there has been research conducted on ways to alert users on the usage of their private information, there has not been much focus on a human-centered solution that empowers users to make informed decisions with regards to their privacy. In this study, we make our contirbutions by proposing a user-centric design for a privacy manager that empowers users, and increases their awareness about how their private information is used. We highlight our findings regarding the effects of Privus on the participants’ mental models and behavior by observing whether the participants had a better understanding of how often their information is shared, and if they were more inclined to control their privacy preferences compared to their current habits.