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Usable privacy for mobile sensing applications

: Christin, D.; Engelmann, F.; Hollick, M.


Naccache, D. ; International Federation for Information Processing -IFIP-, Working Group 11.2 Pervasive Systems Security:
Information Security Theory and Practice. Securing the Internet of Things. 8th IFIP WG 11.2 International Workshop, WISTP 2014 : Heraklion, Crete, Greece, June 30 - July 2, 2014, Proceedings
Berlin: Springer, 2014 (Lecture Notes in Computer Science 8501)
ISBN: 3-662-43825-9
ISBN: 978-3-662-43825-1 (Print)
ISBN: 978-3-662-43826-8 (Online)
International Workshop on Information Security Theory and Practice (WISTP) <8, 2014, Heraklion>
Fraunhofer FKIE ()

Current mobile applications gather an increasing amount of data about the users and their environment. To protect their privacy, users can currently either opt out of using the applications or switch off their mobile phones. Such binary choices, however, void potential benefit for both users and applications. As an alternative, finer control over their privacy could be given to users by deploying privacy-preserving mechanisms. However, it is unclear if users are able to perform the necessary configuration of such schemes. In this paper, we therefore investigate to which degree users can understand the underlying mechanisms as well as the resulting trade-offs in terms of, e.g., privacy protection and battery consumption. To this end, we have conducted a user study involving 20 participants based on user interfaces especially designed for this purpose. The results show that our participants would prefer deciding on the consequences and leave the system parameterizing the underlying mechanism.