Initial trust in emerging technologies and the effect of threats to privacy.
Thesis DisciplineInformation Systems
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameDoctor of Philosophy
Purpose: This thesis seeks to identify what factors influence technology trust beliefs in emerging technologies, as opposed to non-emerging technologies, with which individuals have little prior knowledge or experience of. In particular, it explores the relationship between perceived threats to personal information privacy (PIP) and technology trust. This research is comprised of two studies. Study 1 explores a new framework to identify emerging technologies, unique PIP threats to emerging technologies, and whether these PIP threats effect initial technology trust beliefs. A number of covariates are also tested, including disposition to trust generally, disposition to technology trust, faith in humanity, economic environment, subjective norms and initial familiarity. Study 2 tests the predictive validity of the findings in Study 1 and further investigates the relationships between initial trust, PIP threats and the significant covariates found in Study 1. Initial technology trust models are developed and tested, and compared between emerging and non-emerging technologies.
Methodology: A wide range of literature, including Information Systems, Psychology, E-Commerce, Economics, Science and Legal, is considered for theory development. Study 1 performs a controlled, randomised post-test experiment on 293 subjects with four emerging technology groups and one non-emerging control group. Factor analyses, MANOVAs and MANCOVAs are performed. For Study 2, PLS-SEM procedures test the proposed initial technology trust model against both emerging and non-emerging technologies.
Findings: A framework to assess whether emerging technologies are truly “emergent” is identified based on their innovative and transformative nature. New dimensions for PIP threats are discovered (intrusiveness, omnipotence and invisibility) for emerging technologies. These are found to have a negative influence on initial technology trust beliefs. A new dimension for technology trust is discovered for non-emerging technologies called “data integrity.” Findings suggest situational normality should be removed from existing initial technology trust models as an antecedent for institutional-based trust in emerging technologies. The covariate variables all had a significant effect on initial technology trust beliefs. Further investigation using PLS-SEM supports the inclusion of the covariates in future technology trust research and demonstrates two different initial technology trust models exist for emerging and non-emerging technologies. Evidence indicates the cognitive process to evaluate initial trust in emerging technologies is distinct from non-emerging technologies and the two cannot be considered, or assumed, to be the same.