Data collection relating to personal information and purchase behaviours – a consumer perspective. Every individual to a certain percentage values their privacy. Differentiating factors amongst various individuals could be their cultural background, social environment, literacy and general awareness amongst others. Advancements in technology leading to development of secret cameras for instantaneous photographs, discount cards that store your purchase information, and scanners, have also contributed to this invasion of privacy. Database marketing assist marketers to record actual purchase behaviours of customers and hence help them monitor and tailor their promotions towards the customer’s interests. Also on the internet a customer is required to fill in certain information before they can make their purchases online. This in turn forms the basis of data capturing by the retailers; these information could be sold to marketers for their promotion purposes. Sheehan and Hoy, (2000) suggests that if customers are compensated for the use of their data, it could make them see the infringement in another way, and they may not likely term it as a privacy invasion. Such is in the case of discount cards which are data capturing instruments, but give customer a certain percentage of discount to compensate for their unknowing loss of anonymity.
Consumer demography and correlation with privacy concerns
Many researches carried out on this topic, though limited has shown some interesting views. The findings of Wang and Petrison (1993) for example and some other researchers are summarised below: - older people showed more concern about financial privacy than younger ones; - younger people were more aware that their data were being collected than older people - younger ones were more concerned about the benefits they would derive from giving out such information; - coloured people were less concerned;
- inner city residents were less concerned;
References: Graeff, T.R. and Harmon S.(2002) Collecting and using personal data: Consumers’ awareness and concerns. Journal of Consumer Marketing. Vol.19 No. 4 pp302-318. Available from: http://www.emeraldinsight.com.ezproxy.liv.ac.uk/0736-3761.htm Accessed: September 10, 2009.
Thearling, K. (1998) Data Mining and Piracy: A conflict in the making? Available online from: http://www.thearling.com/text/dsstar/privacy.htm/ Accessed 16th September 2009.
Sheehan, K.B. and Hoy, M.G. (2000), “Dimensions of privacy concern among online consumers”. Journal of Public Policy & Marketing. Vol. 19 No.1. pp 62-73.
Wang, P. and Petrison, L.A.(1993), “Direct marketing activities and personal privacy”. Journal of Direct Marketing. Vol.7 No.1, pp 7-19.
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