About Me

Dr. Phil Legg is an Associate Professor in Cyber Security and Programme Leader for MSc Cyber Security at the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol), UK.

His research interests address many aspects of Cyber Security, including how machine learning, visual analytics, and human-computer interaction are used within cyber security, to improve interpretability and understanding of risk, and to improve robustness and trust of modern security technologies. His research ranges from insider threat detection and cyber situational awareness, through to human-machine teaming for assessing confidence and trust of multiple agents, and active adversarial machine-learning for identifying security vulnerabilities in learning systems. At UWE Bristol, he is an active researcher within the Computer Science Research Centre in the Department of Computer Science and Creative Technologies.

He studied at Cardiff University for both his BSc Computer Science and his PhD Computer Science. After completing his PhD in 2010, he went on to post-doctoral research and teaching roles at Swansea University and the University of Oxford, working with a variety of stakeholders in industry and government. He then joined UWE Bristol in 2015. He holds a Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning for Higher Education (Distinction), and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. He is also a professional member of the IEEE and the BCS.


My research interests intersect Cyber Security, Machine Learning and Visual Analytics. In particular, I am interested in how we can use Machine Learning for Cyber Security, whilst ensuring that learning algorithms are robust to adversaries (e.g., "insider" threats, or those who can craft adversarial inputs). I'm also interested in how interactive ML can be used with visualisation to better facilitate cyber security analysts, creating a greater collaborative effort between human and machine analysis. Lastly, I have recently been interested in how ML can be used for cyber security defence, including the dynamic generation of deception networks, and the use of federated learning for increased privacy preservation in machine learning across distributed networks.

I have led externally funded research projects, including "HASTE: Human-centric active learning for decision support in threat exploration (ACC103103)" and "RicherPicture: Automated network defence through business and threat led machine learning (CDE37775)". These projects were both gratefully supported by DSTL. Other research projects and activities have also been supported by UK Government, and UK-based SMEs.

I currently supervise 3 PhD students in Machine Learning and Cyber Security, who as part of their research activities work collaboratively with UK-based SMEs.

Publication details available on Google Scholar.


I am currently the Programme Leader for the MSc Cyber Security course at UWE Bristol, which has been provisionally certified by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC). I teach Information Risk Management as part of the MSc Cyber Security. I also teach Security Data Analytics and Visualisation on the undergraduate BSc Forensic Computing and Security programme. I also supervise a number of undergraduate projects and postgraduate dissertations each year.

I help to organise outreach educational activities with our local communities, involving schools and businesses. At UWE Bristol, we have hosted NCSC CyberFirst competitions and Cyber Security Challenge UK. We have also hosted education events for local school teachers, and we have industry partners that we collaborative with to deliver workshop activities.

I am also a co-founder of CISSEUK (Colloquium on Information Systems Security Education UK), a recent UK initiative with long-standing US history that seeks to develop a collaborative learning and teaching community in Cyber Security, both across the UK and with CISSE USA.


If you are interested in my work please get in touch. I am always keen to discuss new opportunities for collaboration, whether this be for research activity or for teaching and educational engagement.

Room 2Q17
Frenchay Campus
University of the West of England
Bristol, UK.


(0117) 3282880