Academia de Studii Economice Bucuresti

Amfiteatru Economic
Facultatea de Business si Turism

Modelling Users` Trust in Online Social Networks

Author:Iacob Cătoiu, Mihai Orzan, Octav-Ionuţ Macovei and Claudia Iconaru

JEL:M31, L82


Keywords:social media, users trust, online privacy, structural equation

Previous studies (McKnight, Lankton and Tripp, 2011; Liao, Lui and Chen, 2011) have shown the crucial role of trust when choosing to disclose sensitive information online. This is the case of online social networks users, who must disclose a certain amount of personal data in order to gain access to these online services. Taking into account privacy calculus model and the risk/benefit ratio, we propose a model of users` trust in online social networks with four variables. We have adapted metrics for the purpose of our study and we have assessed their reliability and validity. We use a Partial Least Squares (PLS) based structural equation modelling analysis, which validated all our initial assumptions, indicating that our three predictors (privacy concerns, perceived benefits and perceived risks) explain 48% of the variation of users` trust in online social networks, the resulting variable of our study. We also discuss the implications and further research opportunities of our study.
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