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A cross-cultural investigation of situational information security awareness programs

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Purpose ‐ The aim of this research is to make users aware of the importance surrounding the issue of security and security awareness while at the same time making educators as well as other individuals aware of the differing effects of cultural dimensions into the learning process. Design/methodology/approach ‐ An inter-cultural study was conducted to investigate if users from the USA and Taiwan exposed to the same situational awareness learning would have different performance in those security awareness outcomes. Findings ‐ The findings confirm that American users who received the situational learning outperformed those users who received the traditional face-to-face instruction. Taiwanese users did not perform significantly differently between these two treatments. Research limitations/implications ‐ The study was only focused on two countries and therefore may limit its implications worldwide. But the study does show that global citizens also react differently to security awareness as would be expected due to differing cultures. Certainly, awareness of the risks and safeguards is the first line of defense that can be employed by any individual, but how individuals address these risks can be very dissimilar in different cultures. Therefore, the implications are apparent that the issue of security awareness should be studied from different cultural perspectives. Originality/value ‐ This paper offers original findings and value into the investigation of whether or not situational security awareness training is culturally-bounded.

Keywords: Data security; Taiwan; Training; United States of America

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2008-10-10

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