ISyE Department Seminar - Eran Toch

Wednesday, March 27, 2019 - 1:30pm to 2:30pm

ISyE Main Room 228

Title: A Penny for your Data? The Value of Privacy in Mobile Crowdsourcing



Crowdsourcing systems often exhibit some negative externalities in the form of collecting and using sensitive data about their participants, such as their location. However, do workers care about these externalities, and do they take them into account when deciding to accept to reject a task? In this talk, we review the conflicting literature that tried to model the economic valuation of privacy. We then focus on mobile crowdsourcing as a test case that simplifies some of the experimental settings involved in privacy research. To assess the value users give to their location, and to understand its relationship with information sharing, we conducted a study on a mobile crowdsourcing platform. We quantify how users’ valuation of location privacy is dependent on the sharing scenario. For instance, when the location is to be shared with an untrusted advertiser, the users require a premium as compensation for their information. Additionally, benefit perception and trust are found to be connected with more frequent location sharing, while perceived risks and privacy concern are associated with sharing one’s location less frequently. We then discuss how valuation-based approaches can help us better understand privacy concerns and ground theoretical notions of privacy in concrete user behavior.


Short bio:

Eran is a visiting associate professor at Cornell Tech and a permanent member of the Department of Industrial Engineering at Tel-Aviv University. He is also the co-director of the IWiT (Interacting with Technoloy Lab). Eran’s research group is working on usable privacy and security, large-scale analysis of interactive behavior, and mobile computing. The research group is currently running several projects funded by agencies such as the Israeli Science Foundation (ISF), DARPA, European Union Horizon 2020 Program, and Israel Ministry of Science.