This paper recently won the Best Paper award at the 2014 International Symposium on Ethics in Engineering, Science and Technology.

“An increasing number of Brain-Computer Interfaces (BCIs) are being developed in medical and nonmedical fields, including marketing, gaming and entertainment industries. BCI-enabled technology carries a great potential to improve and enhance the quality of human lives. It provides people suffering from severe neuromuscular disorders with a way to interact with the external environment. It also enables a more personalized user experience in gaming and entertainment.

These BCI applications are, however, not without risk. Established engineering practices set guarantees on performance, reliability and physical safety of BCIs. But no guarantees or standards are currently in place regarding user privacy and security. In this paper, we identify privacy and security issues arising from possible misuse or inappropriate use of BCIs. In particular, we explore how current and emerging non-invasive BCI platforms can be used to extract private information, and we suggest an interdisciplinary approach to mitigating this problem. This is a first step towards making BCI-enabled technologies
secure and privacy preserving.”