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University of Michigan School of Information

Yixin Zou

Yixin Zou

PhD Student Email:


I am a PhD student at the University of Michigan, School of Information (UMSI) advised by Prof. Florian Schaub. I am part of the Security and Privacy Interaction (SPI) Lab and the Michigan Interactive and Social Computing (MISC) group. I also work closely with the Usable Privacy Policy Project team at Carnegie Mellon University, and a research team based in New York City that studies computer security and privacy issues in the context of intimate partner violence.


Areas of Interest

My research interests lie in the intersection of security, privacy, and human-computer interactions. I study topics such as data breach notifications, phishing/malware warnings, and website privacy choices, trying to understand users' behavior and preference in these contexts and how to better motivate users to take actions in face of threats through HCI and interaction design.

Honors and Awards

Best Paper Honorable Mention, ACM SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (2019, 2020)

Facebook Fellowship Finalist (2019, 2020)

UMSI Field Prelim Milestone Distinction Award (2019)

NortonLifeLock Research Group Graduate Fellowship (2019)

Distinguished Paper Award, Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security (2018)


B.S. in Advertising, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


Privacy at Michigan Online Self-Defense Workshops
Privacy workshops to offer tips on securing personal data online

Members of the University of Michigan School of Information’s Security Privacy Interaction Lab will present online self-defense workshops on protecting accounts and devices and personal information as part of the Privacy@Michigan series of virtual events centering data privacy.

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Yixin Zou, Florian Schaub, Allison McDonald
Computer security personnel need tools, training to assist survivors of intimate partner violence

Survivors of intimate partner violence who experience tech abuse often reach out to computer security companies for help. But the customer support personnel at these companies are not sufficiently prepared to handle such cases.

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