Sabina Raluca Datcu Independent researcher
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The concept of 'sensitive information' has a lot of different definitions, most of them being part of the laws and regulations of different countries. To sum these definitions up, information is considered to be sensitive if the loss of its confidentiality or availability has severely undesirable effects on organizations or individuals.
No matter the different conceptual definitions of 'sensitive information', the human factor is the core element dictating what this notion should signify.
This paper presents the findings of a multi-cultural study: 2,100 persons from seven countries - representing seven different cultural views - were questioned regarding the notion of 'sensitive information' and what kind of information they would be willing to disclose to another 'reliable person'.
While the respondents from a country exposed a type of information without restrictions clearly considered it 'public information', others deemed it to be sensitive and didn't want to provide this kind of data 'to a stranger'.
A direct correlation was observed between the information provided and the countries the respondents were from, meaning that the historical and cultural background of the interviewed persons - defined by the countries in which they live - significantly influence the concept of 'sensitive information' and the kind of data they want to reveal to others.
VB2013 takes place 2-4 October 2013 in Berlin, Germany.
The full programme for VB2013, including abstracts for each paper, can be viewed here.