Smartphones contain a myriad of personal information and, due to their ubiquity and the possibility to access the Internet through wireless networks, our privacy might be constantly at risk. In this study, we formulate two hypotheses: (H1) users ignore the relationship between authorization requests and privacy and this lack of knowledge affects their perception towards privacy; (H2) users install applications that access sensitive data that are not necessary for their correct functioning. To investigate H1, we developed a questionnaire and we submitted it to 150 volunteers using a within-subject approach where the controlled variable is the knowledge about possible abuses of smartphone data. Results show that ignorance influences the privacy perception. To investigate H2, we analyzed more than 800 apps installed on the smartphone of 30 volunteers and we found a widespread abuse of data related to location, contacts, camera, Wi-Fi network list, running apps list, and vibration. The outcome reveals that some features are more relevant to groups of users with specific characteristics. By identifying such features, our study might be considered the first step towards a more secure smartphone usage, as such features might work as expedients to attract users' attention on privacy issues.

Privacy perception and user behavior in the mobile ecosystem

Mirri S.;Prandi C.
2019

Abstract

Smartphones contain a myriad of personal information and, due to their ubiquity and the possibility to access the Internet through wireless networks, our privacy might be constantly at risk. In this study, we formulate two hypotheses: (H1) users ignore the relationship between authorization requests and privacy and this lack of knowledge affects their perception towards privacy; (H2) users install applications that access sensitive data that are not necessary for their correct functioning. To investigate H1, we developed a questionnaire and we submitted it to 150 volunteers using a within-subject approach where the controlled variable is the knowledge about possible abuses of smartphone data. Results show that ignorance influences the privacy perception. To investigate H2, we analyzed more than 800 apps installed on the smartphone of 30 volunteers and we found a widespread abuse of data related to location, contacts, camera, Wi-Fi network list, running apps list, and vibration. The outcome reveals that some features are more relevant to groups of users with specific characteristics. By identifying such features, our study might be considered the first step towards a more secure smartphone usage, as such features might work as expedients to attract users' attention on privacy issues.
ACM International Conference Proceeding Series
177
182
Furini M.; Mirri S.; Montangero M.; Prandi C.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/710479
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