Privacy in E-commerce: Examining User Scenarios and Privacy Preferences

TitlePrivacy in E-commerce: Examining User Scenarios and Privacy Preferences
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Publication1999
AuthorsAckerman, M. S., L F. Cranor, and J. Reagle
Conference NameFirst ACM Conference on Electronic Commerce
Conference LocationDenver, CO
KeywordsPlatform for Privacy Preferences, privacy protocols., Privacy, World Wide Web, electronic commerce, user survey,

Privacy is a necessary concern in electronic commerce. It isdifficult, if not impossible, to complete a transaction withoutrevealing some personal data – a shipping address, billinginformation, or product preference. Users may be unwilling toprovide this necessary information or even to browse online ifthey believe their privacy is invaded or threatened.Fortunately, there are technologies to help users protect theirprivacy. P3P (Platform for Privacy Preferences Project) from theWorld Wide Web Consortium is one such technology.However, there is a need to know more about the range of userconcerns and preferences about privacy in order to build usableand effective interface mechanisms for P3P and other privacytechnologies. Accordingly, we conducted a survey of 381 U.S.Net users, detailing a range of commerce scenarios andexamining the participants' concerns and preferences aboutprivacy. This paper presents both the findings from that studyas well as their design implications.