Can conversational user interfaces be harmful? The undesirable effects on privacy concern

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


Conversational user interfaces (CUI) enable real-time communication between the buyer and the seller in electronic commerce based on natural spoken or written language. Although first insights reveal that customers have privacy concerns with CUI that prevent them from adoption, online retailers have especially and increasingly implemented messaging services (e.g., live chats on websites) combined with artificial intelligence. Against this background, and drawing on information systems and consumer research, the current research investigates how the mere presence of messaging services on websites influences website users' privacy concerns. The results of two online experiments reveal that the presence of CUI evokes perceptions of a social presence that translate into perceptions of being watched, thus positively influencing the privacy concern. The findings of this study extend the those of previous research by revealing that perceived social presence elicited by the presence of CUI also yields negative effects. Moreover, the literature on privacy concerns is enhanced by providing an explanation for the effects of social presence.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 40th International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS)
Publication date2020
ISBN (Electronic)9780996683197
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes
Event40th International Conference on Information Systems - Munich, Germany
Duration: 15. Dec 201918. Dec 2019


Conference40th International Conference on Information Systems


  • Artificial intelligence
  • Conversational user interfaces
  • Messaging services
  • Privacy concerns
  • Social presence


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