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User compensation as a data breach recovery action: a methodological replication and investigation of generalizability based on the Home Depot breach

Hartmut Hoehle (University of Mannheim, Mannheim, Germany)
Jia Wei (University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA)
Sebastian Schuetz (Florida International University, Miami, Florida, USA)
Viswanath Venkatesh (Pamplin College of Business, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, USA)

Internet Research

ISSN: 1066-2243

Article publication date: 26 February 2021

Issue publication date: 19 May 2021

593

Abstract

Purpose

In the aftermath of data breaches, many firms offer compensation to affected customers to recover from damaged customer sentiments. To understand the effectiveness of such compensation offerings, Goode et al. (2017) examined the effects of compensation offered by Sony following the PlayStation Network breach in 2011. Although Goode et al. (2017) present key insights on data breach compensation, it is unclear whether their findings generalize beyond the context of subscription-based gaming platforms whose customers are young and experience substantial switching costs. To address this issue, we conducted a methodological replication in a retail context with low switching costs.

Design/methodology/approach

In our replication, we examine the effects of compensation offered by Home Depot in the aftermath of its data breach in 2014. Home Depot is the largest home improvement retailer in the US and presents a substantially different context. Data were collected from 901 participants using surveys.

Findings

Our results were consistent with the original study. We found that in retail breaches, effective compensation needs to meet customers' expectations because overcompensation or undercompensation leads to negative outcomes, such as decreased repurchase intention.

Originality/value

Our study provides insights into the effectiveness of compensation in the retail context and confirms the findings of Goode et al. (2017).

Keywords

Citation

Hoehle, H., Wei, J., Schuetz, S. and Venkatesh, V. (2021), "User compensation as a data breach recovery action: a methodological replication and investigation of generalizability based on the Home Depot breach", Internet Research, Vol. 31 No. 3, pp. 765-781. https://doi.org/10.1108/INTR-02-2020-0105

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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