Us and Them - A Study of Privacy Requirements Across North America, Asia, and Europe

Sheth, Swapneel Kalpesh; Kaiser, Gail E.

Data privacy when using online systems like Facebook and Amazon has become an increasingly popular topic in the last few years. However, only a little is known about how users and developers perceive privacy and which concrete measures would mitigate privacy concerns. To investigate privacy requirements, we conducted an online survey with closed and open questions and collected 408 valid responses. Our results show that users often reduce privacy to security, with data sharing and data breaches being their biggest concerns. Users are more concerned about the content of their documents and personal data such as location than their interaction data. Unlike users, developers clearly prefer technical measures like data anonymization and think that privacy laws and policies are less effective. We also observed interesting differences between people from different geographies. For example, people from Europe are more concerned about data breaches than people from North America. People from Asia/Pacific and Europe believe that content and metadata are more critical for privacy than people from North America. Our results contribute to developing a user-driven privacy framework that is based on empirical evidence in addition to the legal, technical, and commercial perspectives.



More About This Work

Academic Units
Computer Science
Department of Computer Science, Columbia University
Columbia University Computer Science Technical Reports, CUCS-024-13
Published Here
November 27, 2013