Privacy, Data and Competition: The Case of Apps for Young Children

51 Pages Posted: 15 Apr 2022

See all articles by Grazia Cecere

Grazia Cecere

Institut Mines-Télécom Business School

Fabrice Le Guel

Université Paris-Sud

Vincent Lefrere

Institut Mines-Télécom Business School

Catherine E. Tucker

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Management Science (MS)

Pai-Ling Yin

Marshall School of Business, University of Southern California

Date Written: April 3, 2022

Abstract

How does firm size affect privacy protections offered to customers? On the one hand, it could be that larger firms use their size to amass more data. On the other hand, smaller firms may be less careful in their data protection practices. We empirically analyze a special subset of apps where privacy concerns are very important - apps targeted at very young children. Our results suggest that larger firms offer more privacy protections to young children than smaller firms. Larger app developers request fewer pieces of sensitive data from consumers. This effect is stronger in countries with laxer standards of privacy protection. We also investigate whether a platform can help regulate privacy protection successfully, and we find that self-certification programs offered by platforms can help reduce data collection from children.

Keywords: data and competition, economics of privacy, apps for young children

JEL Classification: D82, D83, M31, M37

Suggested Citation

Cecere, Grazia and Le Guel, Fabrice and Lefrere, Vincent and Tucker, Catherine E. and Yin, Pai-Ling, Privacy, Data and Competition: The Case of Apps for Young Children (April 3, 2022). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4073931 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4073931

Grazia Cecere (Contact Author)

Institut Mines-Télécom Business School ( email )

9 rue Charles Fourier
Evry, 91011
France

Fabrice Le Guel

Université Paris-Sud ( email )

Faculté Jean-Monnet, 54, bd Desgranges
Sceaux, 92331
France

Vincent Lefrere

Institut Mines-Télécom Business School ( email )

9 rue Charles Fourier
Evry, 91011
France

Catherine E. Tucker

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Management Science (MS) ( email )

100 Main St
E62-536
Cambridge, MA 02142
United States

HOME PAGE: http://cetucker.scripts.mit.edu

Pai-Ling Yin

Marshall School of Business, University of Southern California ( email )

United States

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