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Willingness to disclose personal information when shopping online: a comparison between consumers from the Netherlands, Germany, and Indonesia

Uilenberg, A. (2015) Willingness to disclose personal information when shopping online: a comparison between consumers from the Netherlands, Germany, and Indonesia.

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Abstract:E-commerce is growing rapidly. However, still many users avoid purchasing online due to privacy and security concerns, consumers are mainly hesitant to disclose personal information online. Consumers’ personal information is a valuable asset for organizations as this can create competitive advantages when used in for example information driven programs (e.g. CRM) (Wakefield, 2013). Objectives – The question remains which factors influence consumers’ willingness to disclose personal information online. Increasingly, scholars stress the need for including cultural values in online privacy research. Therefore, this study will try to fill this theoretical gap by including Hofstede’s framework. The research is conducted with participants from three countries: the Netherlands, Germany, and Indonesia. These countries are chosen as in all three countries e-commerce is high and/or is rapidly growing. Also, even though the Netherlands and Germany are neighboring countries, there are many differences in cultural values making it highly interesting to detect differences in the willingness to disclose personal information. Additionally, Internet skills are taken into account since to know how to use computers and the Internet is a prerequisite for online shopping. The purpose of this research is to develop and validate a research model concerning the factors that influence a consumer’s willingness to disclose personal information. Methods - The research model was tested using data collected with an online survey that was completed by 362 17-30 years old participants from the Netherlands, Germany, and Indonesia that have made an online purchase in the last twelve months. This method was chosen because providing the survey online is a necessity to easily and quickly obtain data from participants outside the Netherlands. For the data analysis, the research model was tested with multiple regression analyses executed in SPSS. Findings – The results of this study confirm that perceived risk, perceived benefits, and website trust influence an individual’s willingness to disclose personal information. The moderating influence of Internet skills and cultural values are only partially confirmed. When comparing the influence of these variables between the samples of the Netherlands, Germany, and Indonesia, various differences can be noticed. An important finding of this study is that the willingness to disclose personal information cannot be measured in general or as one scale. The willingness to disclose personal information should be measured in four subscales: required-, unrequired-, age-, and sensitive information. Another important finding is that when using Hofstede’s framework, individual scores differ from national scores, which indicates the need to measure cultural values on an individual level in intercultural research.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:05 communication studies
Programme:Communication Studies MSc (60713)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/68376
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