Evaluating Users’ Perceptions about a System’s Privacy: Differentiating Social and Institutional Aspects


Oshrat Ayalon and Eran Toch, Tel Aviv University


System design has a crucial effect on users’ privacy, but privacy-by-design processes in organizations rarely involve end-users. To bridge this gap, we investigate how User-Centered Design (UCD) concepts can be used to test how users perceive their privacy in system designs. We describe a series of three online experiments, with 1,313 participants overall, in which we attempt to develop and validate the reliability of a scale for Users’ Perceived Systems’ Privacy (UPSP). We found that users’ privacy perceptions of information systems consist of three distinctive aspects: institutional, social and risk. We combined our scale with A/B testing methodology to compare different privacy design variants for given background scenarios. Our results show that the methodology and the scale are mostly applicable for evaluating the social aspects of privacy designs.

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@inproceedings {238283,
author = {Oshrat Ayalon and Eran Toch},
title = {Evaluating {Users{\textquoteright}} Perceptions about a {System{\textquoteright}s} Privacy: Differentiating Social and Institutional Aspects},
booktitle = {Fifteenth Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security (SOUPS 2019)},
year = {2019},
isbn = {978-1-939133-05-2},
address = {Santa Clara, CA},
pages = {41--59},
url = {https://www.usenix.org/conference/soups2019/presentation/ayalon},
publisher = {USENIX Association},
month = aug

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