PACTMAN: Trust, Privacy and Consent in Future Pervasive Environments

An EPSRC-funded project on Trust, Identity, Privacy and Security in the Digital Economy.

We live in a world in which our ability to capture personal user data far exceeds our understanding of how to manage issues of trust, privacy and consent with potentially far-reaching consequences for both individuals and society. Without independent academic research in this space we run the risk of privacy and trust being sacrificed in the rush to commercially exploit these new sensing capabilities.

In this project we are conducting pioneering interdisciplinary research to create the world's first comprehensive system for privacy and consent management in future pervasive environments, i.e. environments with a wide range of sensing capabilities. Our work is informed by two scenarios - human memory augmentation and personalised information presentation. Both applications have the potential to transform key areas of our society yet raise significant privacy and consent issues that are likely to inhibit their deployment.

Our work involves multiple stakeholders including the NHS and the BBC that represent these application scenarios. The project is drawing on expertise from computer science, design and psychology to deliver both new models for consent and privacy and, a detailed understanding of the cognitive vulnerabilities of users of future pervasive environments, resulting in a prototype platform for privacy and consent management. In addition to delivering significant near-term benefits to our stakeholders, if successful PACTMAN has the potential to position the UK as an international leader in privacy and consent in future pervasive environments and to help catalyse the emergence of this important area of the digital economy.

Should I Agree? Delegating Consent Decisions Beyond the Individual

Bettina Nissen was presenting our paper “Should I Agree? Delegating Consent Decisions Beyond the Individual” about our study and findings from Trustball at CHI in Glasgow in May 2019. If you couldn’t make it there, please see further information about this project and talk here: download the slides with notes: Nissen CHI slides download the […]

Trustball – Who do you Trust to Consent?

As part of the Edinburgh Festival, we have developed a public installation to explore issues of trust and consent in digital systems with the general public. Installed in the Design Informatics Pavilion “Data Pipe Dreams: Glimpses of a Near Future”, Trustball aims to playfully engage audiences with the fairly dry topic of agreeing to Terms […]

Exploring Trust in Distributed Systems

We will be running a workshop as part of the DRS conference in Limerick on the 25th June 2018. This design workshop will be highly participatory with a short introduction to distributed systems followed by several group activities exploring trust in digital systems. We will investigate the changing trust relationships in existing centralised to more […]

Keynote, Presentations and Demo at PerDis 2018

Members of the PACTMAN consortium represented the latest PACTMAN-related research at the 7th ACM Symposium on Pervasive Displays (PerDis 2018) in Munich, Germany. Nigel Davies was invited to give a keynote on “Saturated Display Environments”, introducing future research opportunities in the area of pervasive displays led by the trend and vision in which displays become […]

A Participant’s Report of the PACTMAN ECR networking event

The PACTMAN project recently hosted the first of two networking and development events for PhD students and early career researchers. In this blog post, one of the attending research associates Naushin Nower reports her experiences… The workshop provided a platform for attendees to present and explore the real world problems and solutions from interdisciplinary research […]

Tacita Display Personalisation Featured on Reuters

Tacita provides a novel framework to automatically adapt smart environments to the presence of users while still preserving their privacy. A robust and scalable implementation of the system has been rolled out at Lancaster and has been trialled on a campus-wide display testbed. Tacita was featured by Reuters and a number of news outlets across the UK, India and United States. Reuters reporter […]

Exploring Temporalities of Consent

At the TIPS community building event in Preston in December 2017, we lead a workshop exploring the temporalities of consent by mapping out the relationships between different services and products a user may consent to over time. We investigated the potential relationships and connections between different services and how they might be influenced over time. This […]

Presentations and Demos at PerDis 2017

Members of PACTMAN will be presenting research papers and demonstrating PACTMAN technologies at this year’s Pervasive Displays Symposium (PerDis2017).

Welcome to PACTMAN!

Welcome to PACTMAN: Trust, Privacy and Consent in Future Pervasive Environments. PACTMAN is an EPSRC-funded project on Trust, Identity, Privacy and Security in the Digital Economy.