Individual and Interpersonal Factors that Influence Disclosure of Personal Identifiable Information on Social Networking Sites
People increasingly share their Personally Identifiable Information (PII) online for various reasons, such as the convenience of various websites regarding building and maintenance of relationships, achieving personal gratification and promoting social relationships with people who have similar experiences and interests, among others. The risks of PII disclosure online are enormous, ranging from identity theft to cyberbullying and phishing. Although some users are aware of the potential risks of sharing their private information online, they are nevertheless willing to trade some of the risks for the gratification that they obtain from information disclosure.
The current study discusses disclosure of PII on Social Networking Sites (SNS). While other studies tend to use other theories such as Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation (IEM) theories, this study uses the Social Ecological Model (SEM) to establish the influence of both individual and interpersonal factors in explaining the levels of PII disclosure. This study aims to examine the influence of individual factors, such as self-esteem and public consciousness, and interpersonal factors, such as need for self-validation, social skills and willingness to trust others, on PII disclosure.
Keywords - Social Networking Sites (SNSs), Personally Identifiable Information (PII), Social Ecological Model (SEM)