Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Management Information Systems


John Johnson


Online communities have become a part of everyday life for many people. The members of the communities use them to keep in touch with family and friends, do business, look for jobs, play games, and more, both savory and unsavory. The ease of sharing personal information comes with the subsequent risk of having that information exposed publically or even stolen. The purpose of this study was to explore how much awareness of the risks affects a person’s decision to post personal information to an online community.

Chapter I introduces the concepts and issues that will be investigated by this paper. Chapter II is a review of the literature on risk. Chapter III explains the model that was developed and used determine the relationships between risk perception, attitude, fear, and information revelation. Chapter IV explains the methods used to gather the data and what data was gathered. Chapter V contains the analysis of the data collected. Chapter VI contains the conclusion drawn from the data, implications for the research, and directions for future research.