Privacy issues will likely stay at the forefront of the FTC's focus next year thanks to the commission's appointment of Lorrie Cranor as its new chief technologist.

Cranor, who is currently a professor of computer science and engineering and public policy at Carnegie Mellon University, directs the CyLab Usable Privacy and Security Laboratory. She will succeed Ashkan Soltani, the privacy expert who assumed the role in November 2014, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission announced on Thursday.

Cranor will join the FTC in January.

"I’m looking forward to participating in the great work the agency does in the areas of consumer privacy and data security," she said via email.

Cranor's recent efforts have focused on the Usable Privacy Policy Project, usable and secure passwords, privacy decision making, user-controllable security and privacy, and usable cyber trust indicators. She is also a co-director of Carnegie Mellon’s Privacy Engineering masters’ program. The video below outlines some of her work.