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An experimental method for the elicitation of implicit attitudes to privacy risk

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  • Frik, Alisa
  • Gaudeul, Alexia

Abstract

We test an experimental method for the elicitation of implicit attitudes to privacy risk. We ask individuals to decide whether to incur the risk of revealing private information to other participants. This type of risk that involves a social component corresponds to privacy threats that individuals may face in the field. We derive a measure of individual attitudes to privacy risk with our method. We empirically test the validity of this measure by running a laboratory experiment with 148 participants. Our results confirm that the willingness to incur a privacy risk is driven by a complex array of factors including risk attitudes, self-reported value for private information, and general attitudes to privacy (derived from survey methods in our study). We also observe that attitudes to privacy risk depend on the order in which measures of risk attitude are elicited, but do not depend on whether there is a preexisting threat to privacy, over which participants have no control. We explain how our method can be simplified and extended for use in eliciting attitudes to a wide range of privacy risks and various types of private information.

Suggested Citation

  • Frik, Alisa & Gaudeul, Alexia, 2018. "An experimental method for the elicitation of implicit attitudes to privacy risk," MPRA Paper 87845, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:87845
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Nicholas Bardsley & Robin Cubitt & Graham Loomes & Peter Moffatt & Chris Starmer & Robert Sugden, 2009. "Experimental Economics: Rethinking the Rules," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 9074.
    2. Steffen Andersen & Glenn Harrison & Morten Lau & E. Rutström, 2009. "Elicitation using multiple price list formats," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 12(3), pages 365-366, September.
    3. Alessandro Acquisti & Curtis Taylor & Liad Wagman, 2016. "The Economics of Privacy," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 54(2), pages 442-492, June.
    4. Clemente, Marco & Roulet, Thomas, 2015. "Public Opinion as a Source of Deinstitutionalization: A 'Spiral of Silence' Approach," MPRA Paper 60130, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Charness, Gary & Gneezy, Uri & Imas, Alex, 2013. "Experimental methods: Eliciting risk preferences," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 43-51.
    6. Alessandro Acquisti & Leslie K. John & George Loewenstein, 2013. "What Is Privacy Worth?," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 42(2), pages 249-274.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

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    Cited by:

    1. Raymond Boadi Frempong & David Stadelmann, 2021. "Risk preference and child labor: Econometric evidence," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(2), pages 878-894, May.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    privacy; attitudes; disclosure; risk; control; personal information; laboratory experiment;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D18 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Protection
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • O30 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General

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