Maritza Johnson

Maritza Johnson

Professor of Practice

University of San Diego

Hi, I’m Maritza. I care about building things that allow people to enjoy technological advancements without having to jump through unreasonable hoops to do it safely.

I'm an expert on human-centered security and privacy, and I'm the inaugural director of a new center for data science, AI, and society at the University of San Diego. Through my work I shape how organizations design and deploy data systems. My industry experience includes working as a user experience researcher on identity, security, and privacy at Google, and as a technical privacy manager at Facebook. In 2018, I co-created a usable privacy and security course for UC Berkeley's Master of Information and Cybersecurity program. I completed my PhD at Columbia University and wrote my dissertation on end-user access control, including researching whether people can correctly manage their Facebook privacy settings. In a few words, it’s complicated.

If you're curious to see more check out my publications or Data Curious, a new project I'm contributing that aims to stoke your curiosity about how data is collected and used in our world.

Interests

  • Human factors
  • Privacy
  • Security

Education

  • PhD in Computer Science, 2012

    Columbia University

  • MS in Computer Science, 2008

    Columbia University

  • BA in Computer Science, 2005

    University of San Diego

Select Publications

Improving Verifiability in AI Development

While a growing number of organizations have articulated ethics principles to guide their AI development process, it can be difficult for those outside of an organization to verify whether the organization’s AI systems reflect those principles in practice. This report grapples with approaches to mitigate these concerns.