Cybersecurity Behaviour of Smartphone Users in India: An Empirical Analysis,

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Pintu Shah & Anuja Agarwal
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Purpose For a good number of Indians, their smartphone is their first digital computing device. They have less experience in dealing with the Internet-enabled device and hence less experience in handling security threats like malware as compared to users of other countries who have gone through the learning curve of handling such security threats using other Internet-enabled devices such as laptop and desktop. Because of this, the inexperienced Indian smartphone user may be vulnerable to Internet-related security breaches, as compared to the citizens of developed economies. Hence, it is essential to understand the attitude, behaviour and security practices of smartphone users in India. Limited research is available about the security behaviour of smartphone users in India as the majority of research in this domain is done outside India. Design/methodology/approach In this empirical study, the researchers identified 28 cybersecurity behaviours and practices through a survey of relevant literature. An online survey of identified cybersecurity behaviours and practices was administered to 300 smartphone users. Frequency analysis of the respondent data was done to understand the adoption of recommended cybersecurity behaviours and practices. Pearson’s chi-square with 5% level of significance has been used to test the hypotheses. Post hoc analysis with Bonferroni correction was conducted for statistically significant associations. Findings Overall, the respondents did not exhibit good cybersecurity behaviour. Respondents have adopted some of the most popular security features of the smartphone such as the use of screen lock. However, respondents have not adopted or are not aware of the technical security controls such as encryption and remote wipe. Statistically significant differences were found between the cybersecurity behaviour and practices and independent variables such as gender, age, mobile operating system (OS) and mother tongue. Respondents reported high level

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