CEC Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

2011

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Information Systems (DCIS)

Department

Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences

Advisor

William L Hafner

Committee Member

Maxine S Cohen

Committee Member

Gurvirender P Tejay

Abstract

The Internet and the growth of Information Technology (IT) and their enhanced capabilities to collect personal information have given rise to many privacy issues. Unauthorized access of personal information may result in identity theft, stalking, harassment, and other invasions of privacy. Information privacy concerns are impediments to broad-scale adoption of the Internet for purchasing decisions. Computer self-efficacy has been shown to be an effective predictor of behavioral intention and a critical determinant of intention to use Information Technology. This study investigated the relationship between an individual's computer self-efficacy and information privacy concerns; and also examined the differences among different age groups and between genders regarding information privacy concerns and their relationships with computer self-efficacy.

A paper-based survey was designed to empirically assess computer self-efficacy and information privacy concerns. The survey was developed by combining existing validated scales for computer self-efficacy and information privacy concerns. The target population of this study was the residents of New Jersey, U.S.A. The assessment was done by using the mall-intercept approach in which individuals were asked to fill out the survey. The sample size for this study was 400 students, professionals, and mature adults.

The Shapiro-Wilk test was used for testing data normality and the Spearman rank-order test was used for correlation analyses. MANOVA test was used for comparing mean values of computer self-efficacy and information privacy concerns between genders and among age groups. The results showed that the correlation between computer self-efficacy and information privacy concerns was significant and positive; and there were differences between genders and among age groups regarding information privacy concerns and their relationships with computer self-efficacy.

This study contributed to the body of knowledge about the relationships among antecedents and consequences of information privacy concerns and computer self-efficacy. The findings of this study can help corporations to improve e-commerce by targeting privacy policy-making efforts to address the explicit areas of consumer privacy concerns. The results of this study can also help IT practitioners to develop privacy protection tools and processes to address specific consumer privacy concerns.

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