Dr. Deanna D. Caputo
Chief Scientist for Insider Threat Research and Solutions
Senior Principal Behavioral Psychologist
Dr. Deanna D. Caputo is the Chief Scientist for Insider Threat Capabilities and a Senior Principal Behavioral Psychologist at The MITRE Corporation, applying her deep expertise in the behavioral sciences to insider threat efforts across a broad work program. Deanna is an internationally recognized expert in insider threat, and at the intersection of cybersecurity and behavioral sciences. She has 25 years of experience designing, conducting, and analyzing research with human participants using experimental, quantitative, and qualitative analyses. During her 15-year career at MITRE, she has built and led MITRE’s Human Behavior and Cybersecurity capability area and dedicated team, focusing on operational research and consultation on human behavior and cybersecurity, particularly usable security and technology adoption, cyber risk perceptions and awareness, and cybersecurity teams and exercise assessment.
Simultaneously, Dr. Caputo built and currently leads MITRE’s Insider Threat Capability and multi-disciplinary team. She created and pioneered the development of data-driven, cyber-physical, and psycho-social Insider Threat solutions as repeatable offerings for all government sponsors and critical infrastructure industry partners. These include 18 IP disclosures and the creation of an air-gapped, secure MITRE Insider Threat Lab. Dr. Caputo created MITRE’s Insider Threat Behavioral Risk Framework after years of working within insider threat programs and conducting applied research. She uses rigorous behavioral science methodologies and analytics to deter, detect, and mitigate insider risks and threats by collecting data from real employees. This real-life data is used to identify and analyze how human behavior manifests in cyber and non-cyber sensors and develop evidence-based solutions to identify and change employee attitudes, intentions, and/or behaviors. Dr. Caputo was the only researcher trusted to curate and analyze for four years all of the Project Slammer data from 45 convicted spies to develop the first psycho-social insider risk indicators.
Dr. Caputo holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Santa Clara University, and a Ph.D. in social and personality psychology with a specialization in judgment and decision-making and psychology and law from Cornell University. Dr. Caputo has multiple research articles published in peer-reviewed journals, authored two book chapters including in 2021 Insider Threats: Leveraging the Benefits of Behavioral Science Research in the International Handbook of Threat Assessments, Oxford Press (2021). Other highlighted publications include: Spear Phishing in a Barrel, Journal of Organizational Computing and Electronic Commerce, 2018; Barriers to Usable Security? Three Organizational Case Studies, IEEE Security and Privacy, 2016; Going Spear Phishing: Exploring Embedded Training and Awareness, IEEE Security and Privacy, 2014; Leveraging Behavioral Science to Mitigate Cyber Security Risk, Computers and Security, 2012; and Detecting the Theft of Trade Secrets by Insiders: A Summary of MITRE Insider Threat Research, IEEE Security & Privacy, 2009.
Prior to MITRE, Dr. Caputo was a senior human factors intelligence analyst for the Department of Defense and Intelligence Community, developing evidence-based information environment and decision-making profiles and social-networks of senior leaders. Before her government service, Dr. Caputo was a jury and trial consultant seeking to help Americans receive fair and equitable trials, and researched bias reducing police lineups to better support eyewitness’ and law enforcement.