Email: e.decristofaro (at) ucl (dot) ac (dot) uk
Phone: +44 20 7679 0349 (email before calling)
GPG: 4099EA23ADE1F8BD, Signal: upon request


Dr. Emiliano De Cristofaro


Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor)
University College London, Department of Computer Science
Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT, United Kingdom
6.04 Malet Place Engineering Building (map)



Short Bio

I am a Senior Lecturer (~Associate Professor) at University College London (UCL), where I am affiliated with the Computer Science Department and the Information Security group. My research interests include privacy-enhancing technologies, network security, and applied cryptography, and more recently, human aspects of security, measuring web privacy and security, and problems at the intersection of machine learning and security.

Before joining UCL, I was a research scientist at Xerox PARC (2011–2013). I received a summa-cum-laude Laurea degree in Computer Science, in 2005, from the University of Salerno (Italy). In 2011, I received a PhD in Networked Systems from University of California, Irvine's School of Information and Computer Science, advised by Gene Tsudik. My dissertation, titled "Sharing Sensitive Information with Privacy," can be found here. During my PhD, I also did research internships at NEC Labs Europe, Heidelberg (2008), INRIA Rhône-Alpes, Grenoble (2009), and Nokia Research Center, Lausanne (2010).

Recent News & Announcements

  • Yearly Email Sabbatical Apr 7-17: I will be traveling and not replying to emails between April 7-17. For very urgent matters, please text me on Signal. If you don't have my Signal number, you can leave a voicemail at
  • NEW! Post-doc position: We will very soon announcing an open post-doc position to be filled ASAP to work on exciting privacy/systems security projects (official ad to come soon). Email me if interested!
  • Our 4chan measurement paper accepted at ICWSM 2017. Media coverage: Motherboard, The Conversation, Pacific Standard, La Repubblica (in Italian), La Stampa (in Italian)
  • Invited to serve in the PC of ACM CCS 2017
  • Our Dagstuhl seminar on Cybersafety has been accepted, will take place in September 2017
  • Paper with Lucky, Enrico, Gianluca, and Gordon accepted at NDSS 2017, MaMaDroid: Detecting Android Malware by Building Markov Chains of Behavioral Models
  • MIT Tech Review covers our paper on big-data analysis of world cuisines

Working with me

Please send me a short (and personal) email with your CV, the names of 2-3 references, and 2-3 paragraphs summarizing your research interests, whether you have funding, and whether you have already contacted someone in UCL's Information Security Group, if you are interested in:

  • Applying for a PhD or post-doc under my supervision. For more information on studentships, scholarships, and funding, please visit this page. We also have a Security Science Doctoral Training Center (DTC) and opportunities with the Alan Turing Institute and I am open to supervise students on security and privacy topics.
  • Being hosted at UCL on research visits or fellowships. There are several opportunities for fellowships, including with the EPSRC, Royal Society, Marie Curie, Fulbright, etc.

Teaching and Project Supervision

Genome Privacy

I have been invited several times to give interviews and talks about privacy and security issues stemming from the tremendous progress that Genomics and Genome Sequencing have made over the past few years. If you are interested in knowing a bit more about the topic, you could read a couple of my general-audience articles, published in IEEE Computer Magazine [PDF] and IEEE Security & Privacy [PDF]. You can also look at some slides from a keynote speech I have recently given in Tokyo. On YouTube, there is also an old video of me giving a talk at Purdue. Finally, genomeprivacy.org maintains an amazingly accurate list of papers published on the topic, while genopri.org is an annual workshop on genome privacy and security I have contributed to establish.

Current Activities

  • Journal of Cybersecurity (JCS), Cryptography and Associated Topics Area Editor
  • 24th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security (CCS 2017), Dallas, TX, Oct 30-Nov 3, 2017
  • 17th Privacy Enhancing Technologies Symposium (PETS 2017), Minneapolis, Minnesota, July 2017 (also serving in Advisory Board)
  • 26th International World Wide Web Conference (WWW 2017), Perth, Australia, April 3-7, 2017
  • 12th ACM Asia Conference on Computer and Communications Security (AsiaCCS 2017), Abu Dhabi, UAE, April 2-6, 2017
  • 24th Network and Distributed System Security Symposium (NDSS 2017), San Diego, CA, February 2017
  • Click here for past activities



I was born in 1982 in Avellino, a town surrounded by the green hills of Irpinia (from the Latin hirpus, wolf), in the southern Italian region Campania. Irpinia is known for its medieval castles, hazelnuts, truffles, torrone (hard candy with hazelnuts and almonds) and a few wines such as Taurasi, Fiano di Avellino, and Greco di Tufo. I have spent six great years in sunny California (4 in Irvine and 2 in Palo Alto), before moving to the dark side (weather-wise, obviously), i.e., London. I have also briefly lived in Chioggia, Rome, Portsmouth, Heidelberg, Singapore, Grenoble, and Lausanne. In my free time, I like brewing coffee, watching movies, planning trips with my wife Darya, reading about politics and economics, cooking, and remembering the times I used to surf in San Onofre. I speak English, Italian, and French, and can utter a few words in German, Spanish, and Farsi.