The Influence of Knowledge and Attitude on Intention to Adopt Cybersecure Behaviour

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Information & Security: An International Journal, Volume 46, Issue 3, p.251-266 (2020)


cybersecurity attitude, cybersecurity awareness, cybersecurity behaviour, cybersecurity knowledge, cybersecurity questionnaire, Information Security


In general, people are poorly protected against cyberthreats, with the main reason being user behaviour. For the study described in this paper, a questionnaire was developed in order to understand how people’s knowledge of and attitude towards both cyberthreats and cyber security controls affect intention to adopt cybersecure behaviour. The study divides attitude into a cognitive and an affective component. Although only the cognitive component of attitude is usually studied, the results from a questionnaire of 300 respondents show that both the affective and cognitive components of attitude have a clearly positive, albeit varying, influence on behavioural intention, with the affective component having an even greater effect on attitude than the cognitive aspect. No correlation was found between knowledge and behavioural intention. The results indicate that attitude is an important factor to include when developing behavioural interventions, but also that different kinds of attitude should be addressed differently in interventions.

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Last updated: Monday, 19 October 2020