WE ARE CURRENTLY RECRUITING SUBJECTS FOR THREE STUDIES:
The studies are described in detail below:
1. BRAIN DYNAMICS OF NICOTINE ($100)
Recruiting subjects ages 21-55 with moderate to severe nicotine addiction.
Requires one visit, after 12 hours of abstaining from nicotine. Subjects will then "smoke" in the scanner, so permit analysis of how the brain responds to cravings and satisfaction of cravings.
Inclusion criteria (addiction and abstaining) will be confirmed physiologically (breathalyzer) prior to participation.
PLEASE WRITE "NICOTINE" AND YOUR LOCATION (STONY BROOK OR BOSTON) IN HEADER.
2. DYNAMIC CONNECTIVITY UNDER METABOLIC CONSTRAINTS ($280)
Recruiting subjects ages 18-70, who do not have insulin-dependent diabetes.
Requires three visits: one under normal conditions, one under 12-hour fasting conditions, and one after having followed a low-carb diet for 1-2 weeks. During your MRI, you will perform a cognitive task (navigating through a virtual maze) before and after sipping a sweet drink containing 75g of glucose.
Inclusion criteria (dietary compliance) will be confirmed physiologically (breathalyzer, urine-analysis) prior to participation.
PLEASE WRITE "METABOLIC" AND YOUR LOCATION (STONY BROOK OR BOSTON) IN HEADER.
3. CYBERSECURITY: PATTERN RECOGNITION UNDER AMBIGUITY ($50)
Recruiting subjects ages 18-45.
Requires one visit, during which you will play the CYBERSECURITY ENTERPRISES game while we scan your brain with fMRI.
Requires showing competency on game shown below before scheduling.
Please submit contact information and preliminary scores below (silver scores or better required).
Inclusion Criteria (ability to play CYBERSECURITY ENTERPRISES game) will be confirmed behaviorally prior to participation.
PLEASE WRITE "CYBER" AND YOUR LOCATION (STONY BROOK OR BOSTON) IN HEADER.
Below is a shot of an actual (real, non-simulated) cyberattack, as provided by the NORSE Intelligence Service (http://map.ipviking.com or click button below). Each day, military and intelligence personnel, as well as private security companies such as NORSE, monitor hacking attempts upon sensitive or unauthorized targets (e.g., banks, power/water infrastructure, military/nuclear facilities). Cybersecurity analysts are tasked with evaluating thousands of alerts of suspicious activity a day, in order to distinguish serious threats from accidental attempted entry. This is done by identifying a hacker's profile or "signature": certain features (such as intrusion time of day, country of origin, specific target, file size, or intrusion type) that appear to be non-random in predicting imminent cyberattacks.
Not everyone can make an effective intelligence analyst: the analyst needs to be very sensitive to seeing real patterns, but also must avoid seeing patterns that are not there. This study aims to identify what makes the brains of the very best pattern-detectors different. To see if you qualify, please take the test below.
You are a cyber security analyst. Your job is to sift through online communications--as provided by intelligence services like NORSE (above)--and to identify the hacker "signature" that best predicts an imminent attack. Incoming intelligence reports will present you with activity flagged as suspicious in the form of several communications at a time in a tabular graphical format, with each communication in a separate row. Each communication uses symbols that represent features associated with the activity.
Each communication has four features, represented by four different columns:
INTRUSION TIME, INTRUSION TARGET, FILE SIZE, and INTRUSION TYPE.
A hacker will always have a unique "signature," such as always attacking at a particular time, hitting a particular target, utilizing a particular type of intrusion, etc. In the first version of this game, you will receive immediate feedback on whether you correctly identified the attack (100% probability that you neutralized the attack) or whether you were incorrect in the feature that you selected as the hacker's signature (0% probability that you neutralized the attack). Your supervisor will then present you with a new communications report to evaluate. The hacker will always maintain the same signature until you effectively identify the signature several times in a row. Your streak will neutralize the attack, and you will move on to a new threat: a hacker with a different strategy, and therefore a different signature (the feature that identifies him).
Your mission is to identify as many true hacking attempts as you can--in the shortest amount of time--while also avoiding raising false alarms on accidental intrusions. Good luck!
Identify the hacker's signature as quickly and accurately as you can. You will be presented with a chart representing NORSE intelligence. Each row shows features (time, target, file size, and intrusion type) for each reported suspicious activity. You can use the mouse cursor to select any one of the five answer choices. An example chart is shown below.
TIME TARGET FILE SIZE INTRUSION TYPE