Privacy Paradox: When Does Hiding in Plain Sight Work?

83 Pages Posted: 1 Jun 2021

See all articles by Tatiana Mayskaya

Tatiana Mayskaya

National Research University Higher School of Economics - International College of Economics and Finance; National Research University Higher School of Economics - Faculty of Economics

Arina Nikandrova

City, University of London

Date Written: May 28, 2021

Abstract

A hider aims to prevent a seeker from learning compromising information about herself. Before learning whether her information is compromising, the hider publicly commits to the level of protection that she privately deploys on compromising information; she relies on exogenous default protection for non-compromising information. When perfect protection is not feasible, the hider optimally chooses protection that is weaker than the default, thus hiding in plain sight and behaving as if she does not value privacy. Nevertheless, the hider benefits from strong default privacy protection, which warrants stronger privacy protection laws. We extended the model to multiple seekers.

Keywords: privacy, Poisson process, strategic experimentation, private learning, privacy paradox

JEL Classification: C73, D82, D83

Suggested Citation

Mayskaya, Tatiana and Nikandrova, Arina, Privacy Paradox: When Does Hiding in Plain Sight Work? (May 28, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3855663

Tatiana Mayskaya (Contact Author)

National Research University Higher School of Economics - International College of Economics and Finance ( email )

Pokrovski Bulvar 11, Korpus Zh, Office 715
Moscow, 109028
Russia

National Research University Higher School of Economics - Faculty of Economics ( email )

Shabolovka 26
Moscow, 119049
Russia

Arina Nikandrova

City, University of London ( email )

London
United Kingdom
EC1V 0HB (Fax)

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