Evaluation of embodied conversational agents designed with ethical principles and personality for cybersecurity ethics training

Muhammad Hassan Ali Bajwa*, Deborah Richards, Paul Formosa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

There is a lack of training for those designing and implementing cybersecurity policies and technologies concerning the ethical ramifications of their choices on users. Using a principlist approach as our ethical framework, we propose a serious game to assist the player to learn about ethical decision making by providing training about five ethical principles (Autonomy, Justice, Beneficence, Non-maleficence, and Explicability) in the context of cybersecurity decision making. There are many factors that impact human decision making, with personality identified as the most influential factor. A novel feature of our work is that it identifies the relationship between specific personality traits (Openness, Extraversion, Emotional Stability, Conscientiousness, and Agreeableness) and the priority given to each of these five ethical principles. We use personality-principle combinations to design the dialogues of multiple embodied conversational agents, or non-player characters (NPCs), to provide alternative ethical perspectives to the player. To improve the player's learning and engagement, they take on the role of a new employee in a cybersecurity firm and they interact with the NPCs in video meetups to discuss ethical dilemmas currently being faced by the cybersecurity team. Our results from a study conducted online with 219 cybersecurity students show that after playing the game, students were more aware of the ethical principles and their application to cybersecurity decisions. Moreover, players were able to recognize the agents' personalities, which could be helpful in achieving future tailored training.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 23rd ACM International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781450399944
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023
EventACM International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents (23rd : 2023) - Würzburg, Germany
Duration: 19 Sept 202322 Sept 2023

Conference

ConferenceACM International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents (23rd : 2023)
Abbreviated titleIVA '23
Country/TerritoryGermany
CityWürzburg
Period19/09/2322/09/23

Keywords

  • Conversational agents
  • Cybersecurity
  • Ethical Principles
  • Personality
  • Serious game

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