People Trust Machines Over People When it Comes To Handling Personal Info
While it has been shown that people tend not to trust robots and other forms of artificial intelligence, it seems they prefer them handling their personal info.
A new study from Penn State University shows that people felt more comfortable handing over their credit card information to a computerized travel agent rather than to a flesh-and-blood one.
At issue is a phenomenon known as the "machine heuristic," which sees machines as dispassionate -- and therefore more trustworthy. A machine isn't going to steal your credit card info and blow your money at a casino, after all.
However, study author S. Shyam Sundar noted that just because there's a machine at the other end of your transaction doesn't mean there isn't a human somewhere down the line who'll eventually be able to see, and steal, your info.
He warned against this "blind belief in machine superiority," noting, "They should watch themselves when they engage online with robotic interfaces."