CCE Theses and Dissertations

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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Information Systems (DCIS)


Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences


Steven Terrell

Committee Member

Amon Seagull

Committee Member

Michael Van Hilst


Identity Theft, Online Risk, Online Shopping, Personal Information, Privacy Risk, Vendor Risk


Many people have growing concerns about privacy issues, especially the treatment of personal information. Other researchers have demonstrated that consumers do not effectively use privacy policies while shopping online. Current research tends to focus on the contents of Online Privacy Policy (OPP). Often the OPP contains items to meet vendor interests rather than consumer concerns, such as how well the OPP reduces privacy risk. Moreover, various approaches interpret the contents of the OPP rather than the OPP effects on reducing privacy risk. These approaches have not made a substantial impact on consumer selection of a vendor.

The research distinguished two types of Privacy Protection Information (PPI): the level of Vendor Privacy Risk (V) added by vendor practices allowed by the OPP and the level of Online Privacy Risk (O) not reduced by the OPP. A survey presented for each vendor the two types of PPI together with a product price.

The results indicate that the respondents readily used PPI and preferred to have no Online Privacy Risk rather than no Vendor Privacy Risk. Of the six demographics attributes of the respondent, only the frequency of online shopping and the concern for privacy significantly increased the use of PPI. Recommendations were made for future research.

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