Lorrie Faith Cranor

Director, CyLab Usable Privacy and Security Laboratory

School of Computer Science
Department of Engineering & Public Policy (EPP)

Carnegie Mellon University

5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

(412) 268-7534


Blog: This Thing

Website: Lorrie Faith Cranor's website

Issues: Privacy and Security

About Lorrie Faith Cranor

Lorrie Faith Cranor is a Professor of Computer Science and of Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University where she is director of the CyLab Usable Privacy and Security Laboratory (CUPS) and co-director of the MSIT-Privacy Engineering masters program. She teaches courses on privacy, usable security, and computers and society. In 2016, she served as the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Chief Technologist.


Professor Cranor has played a key role in building the usable privacy and security research community. She co-edited the seminal book Security and Usability (O'Reilly, 2005), and has authored over 150 research papers on online privacy, phishing and semantic attacks, spam, electronic voting, anonymous publishing, usable access control, and other topics. She chaired the Platform for Privacy Preferences Project (P3P) Specification Working Group at the World Wide Web Consortium and authored the book Web Privacy with P3P (O'Reilly, 2002). In 2003 she was named one of the top 100 innovators 35 or younger by Technology Review magazine and in 2014 she was named an ACM Fellow for her contributions to usable privacy and security research and education. She founded the Symposium On Usable Privacy and Security (SOUPS) and also directs an NSF-funded Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program on usable privacy and security. She was a member of a team of Carnegie Mellon faculty members who received the IBM Privacy Faculty Award. In 2010, she received a Google Focused Research Award for her team's research into whether online companies that have more stringent privacy practices can command premium prices. She is also a co-founder of Wombat Security Technologies, Inc. and while in graduate school she helped found Crossroads, the ACM Magazine for Students, and served as the publication's editor-in-chief for two years.


In addition to her work at CMU, Professor Cranor is currently a Principal Investigator on the Usable Privacy Policy Project, a multi-year collaborative project funded by the National Science Foundation and involving Fordham Center on Law and Information Policy and computer scientists from Carnegie Mellon University and Stanford. She also serves on the Board of Directors of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, The Future of Privacy Forum Advisory Board, and the USACM Council, and serves on the editorial boards of the journals The Information Society and I/S: A Journal of Law and Policy for the Information Society.


Prior to joining CMU in 2003, Professor Cranor spent seven years at AT&T Labs-Research. While at AT&T she also taught in the Stern School of Business at New York University. In 2000 she served on the Federal Trade Commission Advisory Committee on Online Access and Security. She was chair of the Tenth Conference on Computers Freedom and Privacy (CFP2000) and program committee chair for the 29th Research Conference on Communication, Information and Internet Policy (TPRC 2001).


Professor Cranor consults for companies and non-profits on privacy policies, P3P, usable privacy and security, and technology policy. She has served as an expert witness in patent litigation, privacy cases, and in cases challenging the constitutionality of Internet harmful-to-minors laws, including the ACLU's successful challenge to the 1998 Children's Online Protection Act. She was appointed a Privacy by Design (PbD) Ambassador by the Privacy Commissioner of Ontario, Canada, and has testified about privacy issues at a Congressional hearing and at workshops held by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and Federal Communications Commission.


Professor Cranor has been studying electronic voting systems since 1994 and in 2000 served on the executive committee of a National Science Foundation sponsored Internet voting taskforce. She was also a member of the project team that developed the Publius censorship-resistant publishing system. In February 2001, the Publius team was honored by Index on Censorship magazine for the "Best Circumvention of Censorship."


D.Sc. (Engineering and Policy), Washington University in St. Louis, 1996
M.S. (Computer Science), Washington University in St. Louis, 1996
M.S. (Technology and Human Affairs), Washington University in St. Louis, 1993
B.S. (Engineering and Public Policy) Washington University in St. Louis, 1992