Exploring User Motivations Behind iOS App Tracking Transparency Decisions

Research output: Chapter or section in a book/report/conference proceedingChapter in a published conference proceeding


Apple’s App Tracking Transparency framework allows users to decide whether they want to allow their activity to be tracked for advertising purposes. In this work we examine the tracking decisions made by 312 participants and their associations with privacy concern and personality factors, and conduct a thematic analysis on participants’ reasons for choosing to accept or reject tracking requests. Despite 51% of participants reporting that they had rejected tracking for privacy reasons, higher privacy concern scores did not correlate with a lower rate of tracking acceptance. Additionally, 43% of participants held incorrect beliefs about what tracking does, including nearly a quarter who mistakenly believed that accepting a tracking request would share their location with the requesting app. We suggest explanations for these misconceptions and provide recommendations that may improve usability of both App Tracking Transparency and future Privacy Enhancing Technologies.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCHI '23
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 2023 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Place of PublicationNew York, U. S. A.
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781450394215
ISBN (Print)9781450394215
Publication statusPublished - 19 Apr 2023
Event2023 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2023 - Hamburg, Germany
Duration: 23 Apr 202328 Apr 2023

Publication series

NameConference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings


Conference2023 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2023

Bibliographical note

This work was supported by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Centre for Doctoral Training in Trust, Identity, Privacy and Security in Large-scale Infrastructures [grant number EP/S022465/1].


  • App Tracking Transparency
  • Apple
  • iOS
  • privacy
  • privacy calculus
  • privacy concern
  • privacy decision making
  • privacy paradox
  • privacy salience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


Dive into the research topics of 'Exploring User Motivations Behind iOS App Tracking Transparency Decisions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this