Use of Game Design to Profile Attackers:

Interested in any research that links concepts in game design to security systems in an effort to profile the attacker's identity, motives, skills, etc.; if none exist, willing to except research within the field of game design itself.

UPDATE: Here's an example of what I mean. A honeypot is designed in a way so that it adapts to the attacker as the attacker explores the system in a way that each adaption is an effort to learn more about the attacker, and differentiate them from other attackers. For example, as a very poor example, in the ghost system, there are two nodes: the "insecure" computer and the "secure" one. For each connection from a new IP, the "insecure" computer gets a set of usernames/passwords generated and left as a file in the system; these passwords are for the secure computer. Which oddly, in effect gives the attacker a username and password only they know. After the attacker accesses the "secure" computer, if they create a backdoor, the password they were given is changed. Emails addresses within the system are generated per attacker, and those email accounts are watched for exploit attempts.

Idea is to profile the attacker's identity, motives, skills, etc. in a way that adapts to the attackers and pulls them in further, so more, and more information on them is extracted.

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IMAGE-SOURCE: WarGames, 1983

  • Interesting idea. I tried to make the title clearer and added language and a tag describing this as a honeypot. Hope that's what you mean - fix if not....
    – nealmcb
    Commented Jun 12, 2011 at 16:12
  • I think its time for a "gamification" tag, or something like that, for various methods of adapting game motivations, research, etc to security goals and education
    – nealmcb
    Commented Jun 12, 2011 at 16:13

2 Answers 2


Check out "Gamification" of Information Security: Applying Social Game Design Concepts to Information Security | Skype Education. The goal is different, but some of the analysis and techniques are relevant.


Here is a page at EPFL with a list of research papers that take a game-theoretic approach to various fields of security, if this is what you mean.


  • Thanks, I wasn't able to find papers on that page that relate to the question. I'll post an update to the question to provide additional information.
    – blunders
    Commented Jun 12, 2011 at 15:20

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