Towards transparency and privacy in the online advertising business

FDVT: Data Valuation Tool for Facebook Users

Authors: José González Cabañas, Ángel Cuevas, Rubén Cuevas

DOI: 10.1145/3025453.3025903

Abstract: The OECD, the European Union and other public and private initiatives are claiming for the necessity of tools that create awareness among Internet users about the monetary value associated to the commercial exploitation of their online personal information. This paper presents the first tool addressing this challenge, the Facebook Data Valuation Tool (FDVT). The FDVT provides Facebook users with a personalized and real-time estimation of the revenue they generate for Facebook. Relying on the FDVT, we are able to shed light into several relevant HCI research questions that require a data valuation tool in place. The obtained results reveal that (i) there exists a deep lack of awareness among Internet users regarding the monetary value of personal information, (ii) data valuation tools such as the FDVT are useful means to reduce such knowledge gap, (iii) 1/3 of the users testing the FDVT show a substantial engagement with the tool.

Proceeding: CHI ’17 Proceedings of the 2017 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems Pages 3799-3809

Research highlights

  • After using the FDVT ¾ of the lab experiment participant confirmed that they were surprised by the session revenue reported by the FDVT. This result, together with the wide discrepancy among their answers regarding the revenue they generate, confirms an important lack of awareness of skilled Internet users about the value associated to online personal information.
  • More than 85% of the lab experiment participants highly value the FDVT as an appropriate tool to create social awareness about the value of online personal information
  • 1/3 of the beta-testers show a relevant engagement to the FDVT during most part of the 5 months evaluation period in which they have frequently (at least once a month in median) interacted with the FDVT
  • Users are not reluctant to provide personal information for an informative tool such as the FDVT. In particular, 71% of the beta-testers filled all the 3 optional parameters in the FDVT registration process and 95% filled at least two of them

Read the entire paper here.

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