Individual Differences in Trust in Code: The Moderating Effects of Personality on the Trustworthiness-Trust Relationship

  • Tyler J. Ryan
  • Charles Walter
  • Gene M. AlarconEmail author
  • Rose F. Gamble
  • Sarah A. Jessup
  • August A. Capiola
Conference paper
Part of the Communications in Computer and Information Science book series (CCIS, volume 850)


The daily use of technology has made people ever more reliant on software. It is important these software systems are produced in a manner that is both efficient and secure. In this context, psychological trust of software is a pertinent aspect of research. The present study explored the relationship of trustworthiness ratings, propensity to trust, and trait suspicion on software reuse. In addition, we explored personality as a moderator of the trustworthiness-reuse relationship, as hypothesized in the interpersonal trust literature [1]. We recruited participants from Amazon’s Mechanical Turk and requested they assess classes of Java code. Analyses revealed trait suspicion influenced decisions to reuse code and moderated the trustworthiness-trust relationship. A dual-process model of information processing was adopted for interpretation of these effects. Implications include contributions to research and theory on psychological trust, as well as practical implications for personnel selection with regard to software production.


Trust Suspicion Software reuse 


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Copyright information

© This is a U.S. government work and its text is not subject to copyright protection in the United States; however, its text may be subject to foreign copyright protection 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tyler J. Ryan
    • 1
  • Charles Walter
    • 2
  • Gene M. Alarcon
    • 3
    Email author
  • Rose F. Gamble
    • 2
  • Sarah A. Jessup
    • 3
  • August A. Capiola
    • 4
  1. 1.SRA International, Inc., A CSRA CompanyDaytonUSA
  2. 2.University of TulsaTulsaUSA
  3. 3.U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory711th HPW RHXSDaytonUSA
  4. 4.Consortium Research Fellows ProgramLancasterUSA

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