Daniel Zappala


I am broadly interested in making the Internet work better. Currently, my interests span the areas of networking, security, and usability, with a focus on authentication and usable encryption. Past projects have included multicast routing and transport protocols, streaming video, peer-to-peer networking, and social networking.

Current Projects

TrustBase: TrustBase is an architecture that provides certificate-based authentication as an operating system service. TrustBase enforces best practices for certificate validation for all applications and transparently enables existing applications to be strengthened against failures of the CA system.

TLS Proxies: We have been measuring the prevalence of TLS proxies using a tool we deployed with a Google AdWords campaign. We have also conducted surveys to understand user attitudes and preferences toward the inspection of encrypted traffic.

Cloud Storage: We have been studying user perceptions and behavior with respect to cloud storage services. In particular, we are interested in behaviors such as which services are used, what types of data are stored, and how collaboration and sharing are performed. We are also investigating user attitudes toward cloud storage on topics such as payment, pri- vacy, security, and robustness.

Steam Measurements: We have conducted a comprehensive measurement study of the Steam gaming network, one of the largest gaming networks in the world. Unlike previous studies that have relied on sampling techniques, our study is the first complete examination of a major gaming network, measuring all 108.7 million user accounts and 384.3 million owned games. We examine gamer behavior across the dimensions of social connectivity, playtime, game ownership, genre affinity, and monetary expenditure.

Past Research

Past research topics include sentiment analysis, wireless networks, streaming video algorithms, peer-to-peer networking, and multicast routing. See Publications for more details.