WebInsecurity.net is a side-project to help me focus my PhD studies. The goal of the website is to showcase interesting results from my research that aren't intended for publication, as well as review and collect information on other research in the field of web security or web application security and other related news.
The title "Web Insecurity" has two meanings: Firstly, it's a joke or statement about the state of web security. When asked at a geeky gathering what I do for a living, I often quip, "Oh, I'm doing my PhD in web security. Yes, that's as much of an oxymoron as it sounds." With web-related security exploits becoming increasingly common, it's often hard to claim that there really is much security on the web.
The second is a play upon the world of research and the impostor syndrome thought to be common among both graduate students and women. The idea is that a lot of very successful people secretly feel that they aren't really as smart or as talented as everyone thinks they are. Impostor syndrome isn't something I find I struggle with that much (contributing to open source encourages you to cultivate a protective layer of arrogance that helps with these things), but it still made for an amusing nod to the fact that I am a female graduate student. And I have to admit, I did bring this website out as a research tool when I was starting to flounder in my writing. Read into that what you will; it's still a funny name.
About the Author
Terri Oda is a PhD candidate in computer security at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. She also writes for the Carleton University Women In Science and Engineering blog and posts a lot of photos. She sometimes resents her PhD for forcing her to put her other hobbies on hold, but it does make writing these descriptions shorter.
The top banner is a photo of a Babbage engine, on display at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA. The photo was taken by Terri Oda in May of 2008. Difference engines don't have much to do with web security directly, but the picture appealed to me and the gearing structure reminded me of geared cryptography devices such as the enigma machines.The font used in the banner is Christopher Hand. The whole banner was put together using GIMP.