Predicting user concerns about online privacy



With the rapid diffusion of the Internet, researchers, policy makers, and users have raised concerns about online privacy, although few studies have integrated aspects of usage with psychological and attitudinal aspects of privacy. This study develops a model involving gender, generalized self-efficacy, psychological need for privacy, Internet use experience, Internet use fluency, and beliefs in privacy rights as potential influences on online privacy concerns. Survey responses from 413 college students were analyzed by bivariate correlations, hierarchical regression, and structural equation modeling. Regression results showed that beliefs in privacy rights and a psychological need for privacy were the main influences on online privacy concerns. The proposed structural model was not well supported by the data, but a revised model, linking self-efficacy with psychological need for privacy and indicating indirect influences of Internet experience and fluency on online privacy concerns about privacy through beliefs in privacy rights, was supported by the data.