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According to Spiekerman et al., a fundamental difficulty in probing privacy though scenarios lies in avoiding bias in participants’ response [273], particularly for applications that do not yet exist.

3.1.7 Mobile and Location-Enhanced Technologies

We finally explore the problem of understanding user preferences in the domain of mobile and location enhanced applications. In particular, location-enhanced applications have been widely discussed in the media and have been the topic of much research in the fields of security, privacy, systems, and computer networking.

Kindberg et al. conducted evaluations to assess people’s perceptions of trust, privacy, and security with respect to electronic payments using wireless point-of-sale terminals in a simulated restaurant setting [178]. Their experiment included demonstrations of different payment methods followed by interviews, sorting exercises, and questionnaires devised to elicit privacy and security perceptions and preferences. Their results show that in the user’s view, privacy is mixed with concerns about convenience and social appropriateness [85]. Kindberg et al.’s analysis is interesting because they positioned each participant within a “privacy perception space” defined by the following three dimensions: privacy concerns, desire for convenience, and desire to be socially appropriate.

Location technologies have been a hot topic because of the numerous privacy implications and economic interests involved. In many cases, researchers have employed scenario-based questionnaires or experience sampling to probe location disclosure preferences.

One study, conducted by Lederer et al., found that people were more likely to make a decision about a location disclosure based on who was asking rather than where the person currently was [198]. Barkhuus and Dey employed a diary to perform an interval-contingent study about the location disclosure preferences in location-based applications [35]. This study was based in part on the Active Campus technology developed at UCSD, which includes a location-aware mobile terminal usable within the university campus. In Barkhuus and Dey’s study, participants were asked to fill out, every evening, a diary entry detailing the perceived usefulness and perceived invasiveness of one of two kinds of location-based applications, with reference to the participant’s activities during that day. Results showed that an application that tracked the location of the user to send “recommendations” or inform friends was perceived as more invasive than an application that only reacted to the location of the user to set interface operating parameters, such as ringtone volume.

In general, however, users entrust the mobile service provider to provide adequate privacy protection for location information. Kaasinen [174] conducted user focus groups, interviews, and demonstrations of location-based services to probe their usability and privacy concerns. Kaasinen’s results show that privacy concerns are often cleared by the trusted relationship between customer and mobile operator, as well as by the oversight of regulatory agencies. These findings suggest that sophisticated technologies devised for protecting location privacy may be unnecessary in the views of most users. It should be noted, though, that Kaasinen’s participants were all Finnish, and there may be cultural

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