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 Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)

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PostSubject: Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)   Tue Nov 25, 2008 9:15 pm

Trust is viewed as being an important aspect of successful electronic commerce. Discuss this assertion, making reference to the practical ways in which organisations can address trust through implementing security measures. (at least 2000 words)
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norma galua

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PostSubject: Re: Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)   Thu Dec 18, 2008 3:31 pm

(Jutta Jerlich, Mag, 2008) The critical factor in any e-business, e-commerce and e-learning is the missing human interaction that is created on the basis of trust and common values.
Trust could be defined as the consumer’s willingness to risk the loss of time, money and personal data (Nielsen Norman Group, 2000), in a situation involving uncertainty.

We all know that in the electronic business environment, the face to face communication between parties is lacking and being replaced by the human machine interface. A successful electronic commerce will now depend on the trust imposed between the communicating parties in product and services exchange w/c is the focused of this kind of industry. TRUST is considered as the essential factor in buyer-seller relationship, so there should be a alternate consideration when conducting it using electronic media technologies because its not the same as performing trust in physical or face to face environment.

What is trust in electronic commerce environment?

(Jones, Ambrose, Rai, 2003) One broad definition of trust is the willingness of a buyer to be vulnerable to a seller's non-desirable actions while expecting the seller to perform actions that are beneficial to the buyer without the buyer having to monitor these actions. Buyers look for signs from sellers that increase their trust, and sellers look at ways they can help build buyers' trust. Traditional trust-building mechanisms include physical presence, past actions, and legal and regulatory frameworks. The emergence of online businesses has brought about new challenges for building trust, in both B2B and B2C business environments. The evolution of new e-business models and the advances in information technology have raised more challenges than solutions for establishing and maintaining trust in the electronic marketplace. Both academicians and practitioners are looking for clearer answers to enhancers and suppressors of trust,...

Based on what have stated a while ago, building trust for successful electronic commerce business transactions depend for both the buyer and sellers side. It is in their hands for making it possible, they have to work hand in hand for it. As what have mentioned, they buyers is looking for signs in where they can trust the seller,at the same time the seller have to find ways on how to show that signs to the buyer. That commonly the starting stage in building good e-commerce relationship between buyers and sellers, and thats how trust is build between both of the parties. If it started that way, the possibility of a long and continuous transactions were made for each one benefits. However, the maintenance of a good relationship is not under control for both parties. Why? Its because trust is not established physically making it hard to detect or predict if theres changes before one will experienced the worst effect of it.

The majority of individual or organization who performed electronic commerce are those in business environment, so money is everybody concerned and the focus of almost all the transactions. The electronic network or the internet is the primary medium of online transaction and making electronic commerce possible for individual and organizations. However, the internet also offer the opportunity to individuals to earn money in a negative way or in illegal way. In buyers perspective, its hard to know if you've got the authorized or legitimate suppliers or sellers of bought product or services. You cant predict if all they want is to get your money or not, and cant be sure of it until your order has been delivered in your door. In sellers perspective, they never stop thinking of the best strategies to get the buyers trust. Its not that hard for them to get it for buyers won't know their real intentions without experiencing it. Though theres an existing e-commerce law to protect and avoid this kind of scenario, its still not that hard for illegitimate but knowledgeable enough buyers to escape from the law without even punisher of their actions. From that, aside from the benefits of e-commerce its also in favor for those illegitimate individuals.

To avoid it means successful electronic transaction between buyers-sellers relationship. One practical way of doing it is to build trust and implementing security measures to maintain it. The success of electronic commerce is highly and mainly depending on the ability of an organization to build up trust to their customers.

What are those security measures that the organization must take to have a successful electronic commerce transaction???

(Gaby Herrmann, Peter Herrmann,2004) because of the online environment of electronic commerce, theres already a lot of bankruptcies of e-commerce companies, and the main reason of this is the real and assumed lack of security in transacting and making businesses online. Often, organization and companies are trying to be confident to their users because of their state of art security measures and security mechanism. But this was found to be irrelevant for researchers, maybe this can be just a business strategy for organization to attract customers. Customers should not believe on that without proven yet. For organization, its not enough to gain the confidence your customers by declaring the your have a security measures and mechanisms for them to trust. There are other methods like insurances reducing the risk of frauds or active trust management, it would also be better to include the experiences of other users with an entity. With the presence of other user or customers experiences on your organization services will also the basis of your aspiring customers to trust you as what have done by your previous customers. If your organization is trustworthy on providing product and services online, it would be easy for your to get their testimony about it and be confident enough to present it to coming customers for reference. Remember its easy to spread your trustworthiness to other (it its real), your previous customers will be you positive tool to attract be referred to other customers.

(Clara Centeno,2000) Lack of security and consumer trust in internet payments has been repeatedly reported as one of the most important factors hindering the development of e-commerce. Indeed, most surveys show that consumers lack of trust is linked to concerns over the security of payment data (mostly credit cards) and the misuse of private data, with striking levels of 75% - 95% of respondents worried by these issues.

The events of 9/11, an increasing number of security audit reports stress the key role played by the human factor in the process of building security in general and on the internet in particular. Indeed, technology-based solutions need to be accompanied and supported by a general awareness of the risks, an internal risk management strategy, good internal managerial, organizational and operational procedures and education of employees and end users. The same principles apply to electronic commerce security.
Despite this relatively low percentage of fraud cases, most consumer surveys show that consumer lack of trust in e-commerce is linked to concerns over the security of payment data and misuse of private data.

The following are the risk found in e-commerce especially when trust is not successfully build:

On-line payment risks

The reported volume of e-commerce fraud points to the internet being riskier than the face-to-face environment. E-commerce could be looked at as a new form of distance selling, characterized by a lack of face-to-face interaction and synchronization of payment with delivery of goods, and in the case of payment by card, by the merchant’s inability to verify the payment card’s physical and security features. Committing fraud is therefore easier than in the physical world as invoices can be left without payment after reception of goods, goods can be left undelivered after reception of payment or card payment fraud can be easily committed as "plastic" is not required, i.e., only a card number and a delivery address are needed.

In addition, the internet has a number of characteristics that introduce new risk elements:
• The environment is a more favorable vehicle for fraudsters to communicate and act in due to its anonymity, low access barriers, rapid exchange of resources such as hacking programs and credit card numbers (GARTNER, 2001; FBI, 2000; LANG, 1999).

• The lack of cyber-security skills and tools: organizations often overlook significant risks, i.e. system providers do not produce systems that are immune to attack, network and system operators do not have the personnel and practices in place to defend themselves against attacks and minimize damage (PETHIA, CERT/CC, 2001);

• Merchants are often small and new, with limited security skills and budget and are selling new goods (digital content) that are more vulnerable to fraud (EXPERIAN, 2000);

• Users are more vulnerable: with increasing internet connectivity from home and increasing PC power (available for hackers), average users know little about risks and the security tools available to protect their computers from external attacks;

• Legal prosecution is more difficult, because transaction amounts are generally low, the electronic evidence tools and skills available are very limited, legislation is not yet adapted to the internet environment and where transactions have taken place across borders, complex jurisdictional and
procedural issues may arise (SCHNEIER, 1998; PETHIA, CERT/CC, 2001; ELDON, FBI, 200218).

On-line payment transactional risks

With a view to understanding what security measures are needed and based on results of the analysis of fraud figures available, on-line payment risks can be classified into four categories as follows:
• Risk of merchant misbehavior or fraudulent behavior: merchants carrying out data capture, disappearing and charging unauthorized transactions; charging transaction amounts higher than agreed, charging unauthorized recurrent payments;
• Risk of identity and payment data theft for further fraudulent use on the internet or in the physical world (purchase, fraudulent card application, account take over). Identity data can be stolen through e-mail (or even phone) scam, or through on-line unauthorized access to merchant or ISP servers, to bank servers, to consumers’ PCs or to transactional data;
• Risk of impersonation, i.e. fraudulent use of (stolen) consumer identity and/or payment data, or software generated account numbers for purchasing;
• Risk of consumer fraudulently denying a transaction.

Measures for Building Online Payment Security

Security Requirements for online internet payments
In order to understand the role of "hard," or technology-based measures in building e-commerce payment security, the security requirements from consumer and merchant perspectives are analyses. Consumer payment security requirements derive from the need to:
- transact with trustworthy merchants,
- receive matching offers and deliveries,
- have a customer service or other mechanism for redressing potentially conflictive situations, and,
- protect personal data from unauthorized access and use.
Merchant payment security requirements, however, derive from the need for payment guarantees and for protection of commercial data from unauthorized access.

Technology-based measures to build security
Different technology-based security measures are proposed by card schemes and banks to address the on-line payment fraud risks faced by consumers and merchants. These aim to provide data confidentiality and integrity, consumer and merchant authentication and non-repudiation for each individual transaction. Solutions range from the cheap and easy SSL, complemented by real-time authorisation by the issuer, address and CVV/CVC2 validation, the use of passwords and user Ids, virtual and
pseudo card numbers, 3D-model based solutions, SET and EMV smart cards. The potential of Public Key Cryptography (PKC), Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) and Digital Signatures in building secure internet payments deserve particular attention.

The security of the environment in which on-line transactions take place, namely the technical infrastructure of the consumers, merchants, banks and service providers, also needs to be considered. In this area, payment schemes are promoting improved information security at banks, merchants and service providers with security standards and best practice.

We are aware of the success of the electronic commerce in global market, the trust building activity performed by an organization or sellers to their customers or buyers took a very long time to make it possible. Furthermore, for organization its easy and necessary to accept a very long term Return Of Investment due to the time needed to build up trust to their customers. Not only long scope of time is required to successfully build trust for organization, but the financial strength to survive sometimes for several years until the investment in building trust to the customers start to be paid, simply means to Return of Investment in building TRUST.

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Glayra P. Bustamante


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PostSubject: Re: Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)   Thu Dec 18, 2008 5:02 pm

The most significant distinction between shopping online and the traditional shopping experience is that the customers are actually seeing how the process of buying is done from the point they choose the product to the payment period wherein the assurance that there is a less or no fraud is guaranteed. And this is why trust is a very critical factor in online transactions since not every procedure is transparent to the customer. Real human interaction demonstrates real trust with customers compared to that virtual interaction. This is since a shopper can personally see the product, inspect its features, and he can even try it before he decides to buy it, while in online, the customer depends on the information being displayed with the product or testimonials from past buyers of that product which we sometimes doubt if they were real, and we may think that they are just make-up stories. The most critical part of online shopping too is disclosing our personal information like our real full name and full address which is needed in shipping of our orders which unlike to traditional shopping wherein these details are not likely needed since you bring with you already the product after you pay for it. With all of these, trust is indeed, an important aspect in building a great relationship between merchants and customers.

Trust when illustrated in normal situations like that trust found in friendships, is developed in many ways. Definitely, trust is earned through great foundations of relationship. One cannot disclose the significant information about himself if the receiver of that is not trusted enough. Other way in which trust is built is actually can be made through instant connections. Connections that involve great assurance with people and he was easily persuaded to trust it easily. This is the most common event happening online, instant trust. How? An example is a person who trusts immediately a site on the first time he visited it. This was maybe because the site’s content has included good information of their company that ensures the customers’ privacy when it comes to their personal information. Or maybe their site has been mostly endorsed by other people who have already tried their services. This is another factor to be considered to build a good e-commerce, earn great reputation from your customers and you will earn trust from them and to the future customers in return. And so, a better informational presentation of their company and the products they sell is important to win the trust of their customers. Also, it matters with how they endorse themselves and who are the ones endorsing them. Good and respectable endorsers could essentially help them to earn wide and more trusting customers. Trust, is too some extent, based from the customers’ ruling and judgmental decisions upon examining your business. Thus, in the sellers’ side, they must invest more on how information to be reliable enough for the customers be convinced.

Since trust is a very important factor in a successful e-business, and so there must be some various ways to gain such trust. Several authors of different books or the company owners themselves have studied and researched for effective methods on how to persuade their customers to trust them. And as I was personally researching in different search engines about how to build trust between customers and sellers, there are lots of ways I have found. These methods could be applied by any sellers in e-commerce that will essentially help them earn that trust factor from their customers. The following methods are illustrated by epages.com, authored by Anja Römisch entitled Trust in E-Commerce: Customer Service.

1. Show a face

Well, in fact, having been able to see the one you are talking with in real situations, you can assure yourself that whenever fraud is going to happen, you remember his or her face well anyway. So, in doing a business, it is important for the customers that they are negotiating with real ones. They would be convinced about how reliable and trustworthy your company is if they know that the company has nothing to hide. Showing their faces on “About Us” page or a short video film about the owners, the employees and if possible, the actual processes in the company will very much helpful to gain trust from the users. Well, at least fairness in the part of the customers is realized, they disclose their information and in return, they know what the merchants and the persons behind the company look like. In any case, a face is needed to complete and satisfy the customers’ thoughts whenever he thinks of the company and the product especially that he cannot see them in person.

2. Short Response Times

Customers are used to traditional shopping wherein if they have inquiries with the products they are answered right away by the sellers since they are in the same events. So, with this, the same situation should be present online, if the customers have inquiries, suggestions, reactions or something they want to discuss with the online sellers or company owners, they must respond immediately. Long responses will definitely bore the customers and probably, lose them instantly. The online business entrepreneurs must take note that customers hate to wait especially that the very reason why they do certain things online is to hasten the traditional activities they are engaged before. Online activities are likely expected quicker than the traditional ones. Everyone in the digital world seems to be in hurry that they only want few clicks and page navigations and everything is already acquired. So merely, short response times in answering the customers’ concerns will essentially guarantee the said company’s good rewards from the customers whether they will enjoy buying your products or better, they will absolutely admire and patronize the services being offered. This will certainly help build good relationships with the customers.

3. Personal Support

The objectified way of helping the customers with their concerns could not help build good interaction with them. Answers are ready-made or synched that these answers seem answered by computers rather than real persons. The company should ensure more personalized way to support and answer the customers’ concerns. They should let the customers feel that sense of reality that the customer service persons they are talking with are real persons they are encountering in the real world. It means that to reach the customer’s mind and heart, they have to be more real persons negotiating with their concerns. Maybe a more friendly approach will aid these customer service representatives. The company should make sure that the default answers recorded in the machines will not answer the concerns but rather, they should assign real persons to each customer having concerns. Importantly, these persons who will take care of these customer’s concerns should be really serious and accurate with their answers to obtain full customer’s satisfactory feeling after their personal matters being answered.

4. Fast Delivery and Accommodating Return Policies

One way to succeed in e-commerce is that sellers should maintain their customers. In other words, they should keep up their customers so that they will shop again and again with the company. Or to some extent, they will make you build a wide audience when they endorse the site with his family, friends and relatives. So one way to attain these is to merely have a fast delivery after the purchase on the site is done. Customers again, hate waiting. A long time for them to receive the product will definitely annoy them and worst, will regret shopping in the said site. Fast delivery should be ensured and also, the company should inform at the time they purchase them how long it would take them to receive the product so that they will have the chance to know earlier how long they would wait for the products to arrive so that they will not be disappointed. Another too, the company should make sure that they have prepared return policies so that customer by the time they receive their purchased products, they have a chance to return it if it was not the product they had expected before it has arrived. This is so important since as I have mentioned earlier, by the time they were still in the process of inspecting the product, they cannot personally try or see them, thus, they are mostly dependent to the information displayed with the product or if available, some testimonials made by past customers which are not mostly reliable. So with this, the customers should have the rights to return the product whenever they receive it and they do not like it. Or if the company does not have any policies regarding it, the company should let them know ahead of time that they cannot assure money-back guarantee or they do not accept returning of products.

5. Keeping Customers Informed.

Letting the customers informed with the company’s new products is a very good initiative to persuade them to shop in your site. Informing them through the site about the products is not enough. The company owners should keep them updated through e-mails so that they will be sent product information updates and they can avail and purchase any of it. This is so helpful when the company is promoting promos, discounts and sale with their products. This is a very effective way to attract them to shop and shop again with the said site. However, the company should also let the customers decide if they want to receive updates or not because they could somehow be annoyed with these information updates. They should freely decide for their own and let them choose if they want to shop, visit the site or not. At the end, the customers’ freedom is still the most important thing in respecting the customers’ choice. You can anyway display information on the site not only through emails.

Those are just some of the effective ways in building trust between a customer and a seller. It is very obvious that the customer’s choice and convenience are two important factors to consider in building trust and great relationship between customer and seller. And also, a company should establish a set of rules and policies so that the customer should feel security every time they are having an electronic transaction on online shopping. In addition, full customer service support is very helpful too to ensure that customer’s concerns are answered immediately and accurately. Letting the customer to be informed always is necessary too to attract more customers.

On the other hand, I have also realized that transparency too should be considered as an important factor in building trust with the customers. Indeed, when all transactions and processes are allowed to be perceived and understood by the customers, they can assure themselves that they are having real and reliable transactions with the sellers. However, the company should also make necessary security measures to avoid dishonest customers. In e-commerce, these customers do not have to be always right or the common term “Customers are always right” principle should not be applied at all times since there are also wise and cyber criminal customers that cheat into the system. The security measures should be enforced strictly to avoid fraud throughout the whole process. There are certain things that should be included in the security measures like ensuring that the customers’ personal information are genuine and valid. Identity thefts and false identities are emergent in the internet nowadays, the same as, illegal merchants and e-businesses are also surfacing. Protection is certainly, a very important issue to be dealt with by each seller and buyer in e-commerce.

Finally, trust should not just always be acquired from the customers only but also the customers should also gain trust from the sellers. There are frauds from both of them, there are illegal sellers and businesses online, as well as, there are dishonest customers. Therefore, earning trust is a two-way developing process: buyer should be truthful with their information disclosed (but with cautions) so that the seller could trust their credibility, on top, the sellers should make sure that they had set up secured policies, good and quality products, and consistency of customer services enough to receive trustworthiness from their consumers.


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regina e. abadilla


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PostSubject: Trust in E-commerce   Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:25 am

Trust is the key element in ecommerce, both in traditional models and more especially in e-commerce which is done electronically. Trust is a concept wherein common people understands, however most people get troubled on the specific definition of this concept. And just the way, we consider trust issues; individuals with different roles have different understanding on trust which is based on the specific goals or priorities of the individual. Trust is truly hard to see on the other’s point of view. If we go to the store or site wherein we patronized for about a year, then we definitely built a high level of trust on handling money and information exchange or goods or any services. But then merchants’ approach in the certain transaction would be different on your ability to pay that is why we must be associated with credible ownership of card or any means. With this, trust differs to different people, wit different roles and scenarios. Of course, trust greatly plays an important role in every transaction. When we enter on the transaction, then we are about to participate, and a decision to complete or cancel the transaction we have created.

Trust definitely belongs in ecommerce issue; and the judgment is base on the users experience as a customer and perception on a particular merchant involved. In every transaction, both participants – buyers and sellers must have a decision on trusting each company, sometime sis conscious or it may not be conscious, it just depends on our belief and instinct. But then, in general many people don’t trust the merchant that much, that is they need to assemble positive feedbacks before deciding to trust the merchants. Users certainly look for good signs in the website they try to visit before going on to the transaction. These include the professionalism of design, service, positive commentaries from other users or visitors, and even form the personal experience in that site. And on the other hand, amateur design, difficult interface, bad comments where just few of the reasons why users tend to back out.

Indeed, there is no group that could tell that certain website is fully trusted. Trust is a judgment subject to the users who made the decision to be trusted or not – it is because of users have different goals which made trust become inconsistent. With this, merchants have difficulty in pleasing the users based on there web site interface even on the advertisement. “Trust us.!” Without trust, merchants can’t sell, definitely. People are looking forward on the positive aspects and the absence of negativity. Websites which dealing in commerce can influence there impression if they avoid amateur interface, set there goals and expectations, and implement user’s concerns regarding security and privacy.

Most of the users’ question is the professionalism of the site. With this, designers must be creative enough to be having a coherent interface. They must be sensitive enough in literal errors resulting from mechanical errors, sensitivity also in grammar as publishing the content of the site, the usefulness of animations or then avoid it if not necessary. If the designers cant design a good site, then there’s a possibility there’s no fulfillment in commerce transactions. With my own, point I would prefer sites that used formal fonts – even with that, I could say that there design is not amateur.

The site must also user friendly, there is an ease t navigate from one area to another wherever I wanna go. There must be ease in finding or searching for the product I want to. I would be glad also if they are categorized already for me to easily browse what interests me. If the designer or the owner of that site could make that navigation feature in a smooth way, then why should I trust that site, right? With me, sites with easy access on the functionality they have offered make good points. I could search, browse and purchase on the site, not depending on the specific browser configuration, then it would encourage me to have transaction with them.

One thing that necessary when we are over the net is the security and privacy, and then with that, sites must address this concern. Definitely users would ask for there policy or any answer with this matter in personal way, and not form automatic or answer bot. User’s must have this communication more especially the bothersome of the users after the merchants would get the money. That is why, most users ask there friends or find any customers who have transacted with them then find out if the transactions are done correctly.

Even the price of the product varies the trust of the customers. How the price realistic would greatly impact to the users. With observation, I could say most of the online services or products are moiré cheaper than when we buy on the traditional means, with this I tend to be amaze and ask oneself if this is true. One example is the plane booking, if we tend to book online, we could have choices, and we could choose with low price, and as noticed, about 10 percent could just be paid than on the traditional transaction, this really doubt us, but then, this is reality. This is just a matter on how we trust the site we are having transacted.

Trust should be applied in Ecommerce, definitely, and dealing in websites, it is based on the genre of the site. There are specific principles in designing which should be applied in various kinds of site. And with the discussion it is more focused on the proper design of the web sites. As we observe, even with our own experience, one of the main barriers of building trust in a web site is there poor design and executions of processes and transaction. Broken links, bad grammar, useless pictures, music, animation and long delay in downloading or even uploading times are fro sure ways to decline the visitation of the public.

Ecommerce businesses have challenged on the strategies that should be implemented for proper performance of the site. I had read an article which deals with the application on ensuring a web site security. ScanAlert was one of it. It provides further visibility in shopping behavior of the site by measuring the elapse time spent by the users in the website and the visit which they purchase something. Wit this, they could make some analysis on how behavior change over a time.

E-commerce relies on trust being created and mandated with the help of digital devices and services. The majority of our social interaction requires a certain amount of trust. Just as patient’s trust on the surgery and the post man to deliver mail. Commerce is one of the activities that saturate the society – we are acting as both buyers and sellers, exchanging goods and services, sometimes for money, one directly as bartering. Not surprising trust is essential element in e-commerce. People commonly build trust as they deal with the other people face to face. They are of course seeking the evidence of trustworthiness to the extent that every statement and other factor could be evidence of trust or in other way, distrust, along with the relationship that have created. The main impact of digital communication on commerce is not only the technical aspects in e-commerce but also in the same time, the necessity to redefine the creation of social trust. Convergence is a trend telecommunications that enables the creation of integrated communications rather than fixed and mobile communication. The participants must build trust or else there are no transactions or commerce that would happen, no matter how convenient the world involve in technology.

That is why we could say that one important thing in e-commerce is the trust- users would not complete transaction on the certain site if they don’t trust it fully. It also mean on how the seller trust their buyer, and how they ensure that trust. Trust I a major factor in all relationship or in transaction. This must be two way phenomenon, buyer-seller and seller-buyer. This is really relevant when we deal about e-commerce. I am not a trusted trader if there is no convictions telling that I am a trusted ones, they wouldn’t sell me anything if I’m not that so. Take for example, credit card companies such as MasterCard wouldn’t release credit cards to any people out there who want to have credit cards, of course the company would fist assure that the traders or there customers are trusted and there is assurance that certain person could pay his bills. This aspect focus on how seller trusts there customers. But in our case, which is customers, we are more focused in how we trust the sellers or the site we are dealing with. There are so many researches made dealing with this aspect, however, with the rapid involvement of the people in online business, transactions and events, and then e-commerce seems to be usual in today. I have read a study of Stephen Marsh et al regarding putting the trust in eCommerce, he more focus on how much the consumers trust online stores and suppliers, and what should be done to facilitate this issue. With his study, he finds out some common expectations about the do’s and don’ts in eCommerce. Just as providing the security brands and a good design for proper navigation.

Like what I have said a while ago, trust is hard to define consistently, but then with Deutsch works, they define that Trust is a psychological state compromising the intension to accept vulnerabilities which is based on the positive outlooks and expectation of the behavior of another. One aspect in relate in his definition is that trust is naturally a situational phenomenon: the amount of trust we have in others varies according to the context in which we find ourselves, as well as prior experiences and present expectations. This mean for example, that I trust my brother in driving me in through school or nay place, but then that trust would be subject to change when we are in the course of transportation. The users’ estimates trust based on the experience in different many situations. One of the evaluation that be made is on the application on the Ecommerce site, allowing web sites, pages to pages, estimating the amount of trust, and ensuring a greater trust in site. With this, the merchants should be guided well on ho two please there customers to trust there sites.

In general, or just a assessment in my readings, the usability of website would play great role in the trust of the customers and to have a successful transaction that should be take place. Usability is the product of a good design, the creator’s attempt to cater the needs and demands of there customers leads them to create a good design suitable for there services offered and associating the interest of the customers. One of the good way to have a good design of there web site is to establish a professionalism, and a credible organization. The quality of design - clear presentation, coherency and relevance o the information, usage of appropriate graphics or images, may be seen a good quality design in web sites even in the interior of a regular office or store. Jus for example, the marble pillars in a bank imply ermanence, solidity, wealth. With this, they are intending to inspire trust in the bank's customer. Recommendations from different studies could help improve they way of trust to complete the transaction on the site. In general sense, having a good quality of design which leads to good usability, can therefore increase the trust of the users that get involve in the site. So when we planning to have business online, even in just our own little way of business then, we must put in mind these factors. Trust is most important in completion of transaction and there’s co many recommendations we could get from different authors of studies regarding this aspect. This could greatly help as well. More especially we IT people who have already great involvement in electronic transactions. This could help us to build tust and ways on ensuring that certain site in trusted one.

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Agnes Galinato


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PostSubject: Re: Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)   Fri Dec 19, 2008 11:56 am

It is true that trust is the greatest aspect in having transactions in the web. Trust is something that one could not easily be given to people that he doesn’t know completely. As I was being introduced to online transaction in my early years as an IT student, I am amazed to how people transact and some questions arises: Do the people have the assurance that the owner or developer of that site they are subscribing be truthful to their contracts? Why does people easily and fully trust these people? Do the government have any laws for these? Are they sure that the site is not a fraud or something? Something that only gets money and then disappear in an instant? These are just the few questions that came into my mind as e-commerce had been initiate to my understanding.
Trust is a major challenge to the consumer acceptance of e-commerce: the lack of trust is an important reason for the hesitant growth in e-commerce and for the reluctance of consumers to engage in online buying transactions. Communicating trustworthiness is therefore a major challenge, companies encounter.

Trust is a concept everybody understands at some personal level, but most people will have trouble enunciating a specific definition of the concept. Some people will have strict measures they use to evaluate their level of trust in a person or company, while others rely on a more subjective "feel" for determining whether to trust somebody.
There are many different ways to which department of the government act upon the need of security in terms of trust issues when it comes to transactions being done over the net. An example of this is in an article by Eric Enge, Search Engine Watch, He had spoken about this issue at length with Nigel Ravenhill, Director of Marketing Communications at ScanAlert, the people who offer the HackerSafe service. This service audits and certifies your Web site's e-commerce infrastructure as being secure. Putting their logo on your site assures the consumer (or your B2B customer) that the information they submit to your site will be protected from, well, hackers.
Some of the cues a user may look for while evaluating trustworthiness in a commerce site:
Is the site professional?
Have the designers taken care to create a coherent interface, or is the site the apparent product of somebody learning how to code HTML? Does the site have typos, grammatical errors, useless animation, or any of a slew of other problems that indicate that the designers or implementers don't know what they are doing? If they can't design a good site, why expect them to be able to handle commerce transactions and fulfillment? Personally, I won't deal with any site that uses the Comic Sans font face because it shouts "built by an amateur" to me.
Does the information architecture make sense?
If the organization of information doesn't appear to have been carefully designed, why expect the site designers to have thought much about fulfillment and payment systems?
Is the site easy to navigate?
Can I find the product I want to buy? Is it easy for me to browser the site looking for interesting things I might want to buy? If the designers can't make the site easy enough to navigate around, why would I trust them to have made a backend that works?
Is the site easy to use?
Can I access and use the site and its offered functionality? Can I search, browse, and purchase from the site? If I can't, because of my browser and preferred browser configuration, then the site designers are telling me that they don't want my business.
Are my questions answered?
If I'm concerned about security or privacy, can I find information that addresses these concerns without having to email a faceless answer-bot? If the designers didn't think about my possible needs before I made my purchase, why expect them to handle my needs after they have my money?
Do other people trust this site?
What's the word about this site? Have customers received their orders correctly?
Am I familiar with this company?
Have I had good experiences with this company before, on or off the web?
Are the prices reasonable?
Is the price realistic or just too cheap? Will they hit me with an outrageous shipping charge to balance the low price?

Ensuring Web Site Security

People do not usually trust some sites that present amazing offers. To ensure these information as well as that of the information of the consumer, servicers are being used. Among these are the following:

has been subjected to A/B testing by a large number of retailers, where half of their visitors see the HackerSafe certification, and half do not. Visitors who saw the HackerSafe logo converted at a 14 percent higher rate on average. Pretty significant.

has published additional research that provides further visibility into shopping behavior on the Web. What ScanAlert did was examine in detail the elapsed time between a user's first visit to an e-commerce Web site (measured by setting a cookie), and the visit in which they purchased something (latent conversion delay). To make this more interesting, they started measuring this back in May 2005, and have continued to measure it through May 2007, allowing to see how this behavior has changed over time. ScanAlert has participated in 480 tests by 470 organizations covering a wide range of e-commerce activities.

A few interesting points emerge immediately:

1. Purchases taking less than 1 hour dropped from 50 percent to 43 percent. These are the purchases that may have taken place on one visit.
2. Purchases taking longer than 3 hours grew from 40 percent to 44 percent. The majority of these purchases were probably multi-visit in nature.
3. 30 percent of all purchases took more than one day. So if they are an e-commerce site, know that there is a lot of money on the table when it comes to capturing people for multiple visits to your site.
4. People requiring more than three days went up 23 percent (from 21 percent to 26 percent).
5. 18 percent of purchases took more than one week, a 28 percent increase from 2005.

Arguably, most of e-commerce purchases are based on more than one visit to an e-commerce Web site. Why would this be? Most likely, it's because of comparison shopping in action. More and more consumers have the Web savvy to understand how to compare options, and they look at other places where they can buy the same goods.

The Importance of Trust and Safety

ScanAlert also did some additional tests of the impact of its HackerSafe service on these latent conversions. ScanAlert's data show that for those people requiring more than three days to buy (24 percent of all purchases measured), the HackerSafe logo resulted in a 34 percent lift in purchases, as compared to a 14 percent lift overall. What this suggests is that trust and safety are major factors in the behavior of these more hesitant shoppers. So price is not the only issue at hand.

This suggests online retailers should look at strategies for projecting trustworthinessWill it frighten users away or convince them that you are the real deal? Nigel also suggests that offering users an option to provide you with an email address is a smart idea. Users who are not ready to buy may be willing to hear what you have to say, and may well provide you with the opportunity to get back to them. Following up with an email containing a special offer is an excellent way to increase that latent conversion rate.

E-Commerce Security
When someone is shopping for something over the net, what assurance could they get to know that it is not a fraud? How do you know that the data you enter will be protected as it flies across the Internet?
The de facto mechanism for ensuring e-commerce security is the digital certificate.
In fact, the sole goal of digital certificates is to make sure online shoppers feel secure, by authenticating the legitimacy of the certificate owner and by protecting your sensitive data.
Digital certificates are issued by a third-party certificate authority. The certificate authority will only issue a digital certificate after they have thoroughly checked out a company.
Once you get a digital certificate, you can post a logo on your website. Presumably, customers who see a digital certificate logo prominently displayed on your site will trust you considerably more than if you didn't have the digital certificate. They know that you've gone through a vetting process and that the personal data they submit to your site will be encrypted.
This is one of the ways to which organization or individual customer have a strong and assured bind to the site they are purchasing to. A digital certificate to be able to check the reliability of the site and knowing that the information you have given them would not be used by others or be hacked.
Privacy in E-Commerce Transactions

There are also issues after the customer had done inputting their information. Does the merchant sell those information to others? What assurance does the customer have to know that their privacy are being protected?

E-commerce companies can show prospective customers that they take privacy seriously by applying for a displaying a TRUSTe privacy seal.

The TRUSTe seal tells customers that the company practices good privacy policies. In order to obtain the seal, the e-commerce site must have a privacy policy that complies with TRUSTe's privacy guidelines.

E-Commerce Reliability
If you've taken care of your e-commerce security issues and assured customers that you are a trustworthy partner who will protect their privacy, what's left to prove?
The last frontier of building e-commerce trust is conveying to customers that you are a company that delivers on its promises.
Surprisingly, there are e-commerce companies out there who have digital certificates and TRUSTe seals but who completely fail the reliability test. For example, maybe they promise an order will be delivered in a few days and then they take weeks to deliver instead.
If you believe your service levels are excellent and want to convey that to customers, check out these programs.
Here are also components of a commerce site that suggest trustworthiness from the article of Derek Sisson entitled A thoughtful approach to web site quality. ecommerce | Trust & Trustworthiness:

1. Seals of Approval -- Symbols, like VeriSign and Visa, designed to re-assure the visitor that security has been established. The companies that provide these seals of approval are referred to in this report as "security brands.
2. Brand -- The corporation's promise to deliver specific attributes and its credibility based on reputation and the visitor's possible previous experience.
3. Navigation -- The ease of finding what the visitor seeks. If the information architecture of your site doesn’t make sense, customers will doubt your ability to serve them. In the same way that cleanliness and layout affects a brick and mortar experience, problems such as poor navigation, broken links and broken images erode customer confidence in your brand.
4. Fulfillment -- Clearly indicates how orders will be processed, and provides information on how to seek recourse if there are problems.
5. Presentation -- Design attributes that connote quality and professionalism. Even if customers don’t have any artistic inclinations, they intuitively know if your website design sucks. Your website doesn’t have to do a fancy song and dance, it just needs a professional, clean design that instills confidence in your brand.
6. Technology -- State of the art connotes professionalism, even if it's difficult to use.

These are just steps to which customer can assure that the site they are buying to would meet their agreed transaction. Having a transaction online without seeing the one you are doing business to requires a great deal of trust. E-commerce also requires this kind of deal to its customers, steps should be followed by buyers to ensure that the site is not a fraud. E- commerce replacing the traditional way of purchasing should be taken seriously because of its impact in the society. Organization must have appropriate law or regulation to protect customers from hackers lurking in the depths of the internet waiting for someone to a victim of their nasty works.

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Charmaine Joy Abrenica


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PostSubject: Assignment 2   Fri Dec 19, 2008 12:34 pm

With the e-commerce world, trust is indeed a very critical element that each e-commerce players should be looking forward to. Every organization, online shoppers and the sort would really be concerned about this issue to whether they are really protected by venturing in such kind of commerce. Trust issues with e-commerce is viewed by others as how protected they truly are with their privacy of information and how they are really defended accompanied with certain rights in times of problems in trading and other transactions they do. There are actually different views on trust depending on the state of an individual and it is becoming different as it travels around the web. According to an article posted over the net by Yinan Yang and colleagues, trust can be viewed as a counter measure for al uncertainties in an E-commerce perspective. E-Commerce trust can be defined as subjective of the web communities and the perception and exception of honesty and law equity by others. It is certainly hard to trust in such an environment where you do everything virtually and you never really get to see or touch elbows with those whom you do businesses with. The increase of Internet users has also increased the internet frauds, hackers and all sorts that contributing to the anti-trust issues and such crimes and this proportionally increased the entire web user’s awareness with the trust issues as being faced by the e-commerce now. The issue of complete trust is becoming a very big problem to both web users and as well as consumer service providers or those businesses that duly engaged their selves with e-commerce. So the big challenge is truly given to those consumer service providers or other businesses venturing in e-commerce to establish their selves as truly worth of the trust that the entire web users can give. We can never really define to which extent a trust of one user or consumer is strongly established in doing e-commerce transactions. These trusts would definitely rely on users experience in using the internet. It was said internet users would opt to indulge themselves in E-commerce after 4 to 5 years of being an Internet user. Surveys even showed that around one third of the chosen respondents were unwilling to engage in e-commerce or purchase an item for one reason of being reluctant is that they worry that they can be exposed to misuse of information. According to a post by Susan Kuchinskas in Small business computing.com, “Thanks to constant phishing expeditions in which evil-doers spoof the e-commerce sites of major retailers, consumers have become much more aware about the dangers of offering up personal information online. That's a good thing for consumers, but it may be bad for online merchants, especially those who haven't become household words.” It seems that consumers are becoming smart and more aware of the risks they could be taking in engaging in e-commerce stuffs but that would really be a bad news for the business ventures as well as in the economic industry.

That is not really an easy task since the trust relationship we are referring to is just merely based with consumers and providers identify each other only with their Websites, email addresses and some electronic mediums like public key or with the digital certificates. Sad to say that this kind of array has brought some changes and as well as a set of new electronic threats and risks like deceptions or frauds, mishandling of personal data (credit card information), intentional misinformation posted on web documents, copy legal businesses as to get over with the consumer’s personal information like their credit card numbers, spying and more negation. These set of threats and risks add up more to the burden of the E-commerce environment in dealing with the trust uncertainty. And to which they are the main stakeholders to receive the negative effects such as, primarily, financial losses and the likes. I don’t’ think that they will surely never let it get to them and start to think counter measures to limit or lessen these kind of uncertainties and further losses for them. To counter these threats they have now established TRUST as their primary element in E-commerce, with which is the most to be prioritized on the first hand. There are already mechanisms done to establish initial trust over the web such as a number of Public Key Infrastructures (PKI) which can identify business parties but these were said to be not enough trust models since there is still a lack of logical assessment of Trust in Web Commerce. There could also be certain ways to which a business could establish their selves with to start gaining every consumer trust.

1. Identify yourself properly

Businesses must appropriately identify or introduce their selves on their site since this is one good preliminary step to create trust relationship with their customers. They must post their complete company name, address and as well as their contact numbers to which they could give their users details and assurance that consumers would have their ways to contact a certain company whenever they want to. It is really important that consumer service providers’ show how trustworthy they could be at first hand or how could they sell their selves as a trust worthy business everyone could surely rely on. Legal companies should always be transparent with the transactions they do in a way that they are doing the right thing, or they are really doing the right ways in the personal data of their customers and that their strategies are always taken care of.

2. Respond to consumer

For instance where transaction is being done or your consumer is just starting to view your site to buy something that interests them, it is normal for a consumer to have many or different additional inquiries. So it would be better to respond to consumers in a short span of time. This way could greatly affect a consumer’s trust. Responding to them right away would make them feel that they are really given a proper service and that you are really doing business seriously. On the other hand, late responses would test consumer’s patience of which are not usually that long and that could give you a very bad impression and another customer loss.

3. Inform Consumers properly

Personal information from consumers is required when a transaction is being done. Consumers find it very fun and convenient to do their shopping online but oblivious to many is the risks they are being faced as their personal information might go to risks as well. Consumers have to become smarter now to avoid themselves with different threats. In asking off personal data from your consumers, you must clearly explain to them why would you ask for such requirements and what are you going to do with those data. In this way, consumer wouldn’t be ignorant to such protocols and that they would still be in the know about their personal data.
In times of delay, businesses have to duly inform their end consumers on what causes the delay and that what would their customers should expect from their orders. Never give them false hopes as to which this could really destroy your image for breaking trusts.

4. Structure website with security

Every player in the E-commerce World should assess the amount of trust present. It is said that one preliminary technique in gaining trust from end consumers is the way their websites are constructed. In establishing their websites, businesses have to see to it that their web contents are 100 % Web trustworthy or there is expected 0% fraud probability present. They must make sure that there website is protected from expected harms and they have to be always on guard. They must always inculcate in their minds that the information they handle in their websites are from their consumers and they are the ones reliable to protect it as strongly as they could. And this method should always be re-assessed to ensure complete security. Also they have to make proper navigation with their sites as well as the web objects they placed as their web contents. Poor downloading for example and poor display could lessen the interest of the end consumers for your services.

5. Always improve service

Businesses must always see to it that they are giving 100% satisfaction service to their end consumers. This could always be the best way wherein they could establish their trust relationship with the consumers they provide with. Good service could always refer to how fast they process everything from the start of the transaction till the end and still providing the security measures appropriate in each process undergone. It is a really good impression that you could give the proper service without any compromised personal data from your end consumers. Also businesses must establish return policies that in times customers have dissatisfaction with their product delivered, they have to stick to policies that gives the consumers right to accommodate the service they really want to have.

Also, businesses have to establish a sense of security among their consumers by allowing them to select the mode of payment they want to choose and the software they are using must verify their consumer’s ability to pay of which of course involves credit cards, electronic cash or purchase orders. The business could also use customer information as a part of their e-commerce operation. More refined packaging retains a great deal of customer information, including where users go in a site, and make this information available in the form of analytical reports.

6. Be always true to what you sell

Different strategies are thought of by these several businesses to sell their selves off over the net particularly their goods and services. This is a very important step they should do to ensure that they gain something after their big investments on such business. They would give off the most indulging messages to attract customer to avail of their service. But they should never forget to only display the messages or information that is really incorporated with them. For instance, a company tells the web users over the web that their product is something so good but is really not and when an end consumer gets fooled but realizes in the end that the product they ordered is really substantial, the business is faced more trouble that they could handle and that puts their business into its image risk and wearing off the trust of their consumers and non-consumers who might have heard their scheme. Also sell your goods and services appropriately.

7. Strictly imposed policy rules

The E-commerce laws have set our rules in which every business should be strictly imposing alongside their business goals and objectives. This method could not only establish their selves with end consumer trust but it could also protect them from oblivious actions inside their premises that could hinder progress and destroy their company name.

I have really understood that trust is a thing that you should always get to be serious with and it should not be one of the things you could just neglect. Especially with the businesses wherein there profits and brand are at stake of taking care with their privacy issues. Along side with the e-commerce law, they should work hand in hand to lessen internet crimes and fraud that just slows down the e-commerce industry. Since the legislation, particularly in our country is not yet that reliable, we should start to make it one. We need more advocates to establish a stronger law incorporated with e -commerce. E-commerce is really a good way of employing ICT with the business industry as its offer many advantages and results to more progress, so let us not be the hinder to this progress but instead help it to become more productive as it would contribute much to our industry. And that is to make everyone believe that only the absence of misuse of personal information of others and other internet crimes could be the way to make the e-commerce industry bloom more and that would eventually lead for more economic progress.


Last edited by Charmaine Joy Abrenica on Tue Dec 23, 2008 6:56 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Miah Mae C. Bernaldo


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PostSubject: Re: Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)   Fri Dec 19, 2008 1:07 pm

Trust is indeed a very important aspect of success in electronic commerce. Firstly, the absence of the physical accesses to the product would lead us only for expectations of what the product would look like and the condition of the product. Online shopping means purchasing and supplying a product across the world. It can be uncertain whether or not they are legitimate businesses and are not just going to take your money. And there is no assurance of the product you buy would be delivered in the time you expected it or worst it may not be delivered at all. In these innovative days electronic commerce is the new trend in doing business. Almost all business establishments are doing business online because of the benefits they get. In the company’s side, it is more advantageous for them to put up a business online because they don’t need to put up and build a physical store and it would be less expensive for them because they don’t need to hire many staff for the operation of their store. Through e-commerce it is easier to access the global market. Because the internet spans all over the world, doing business to other person is possible just by connecting to the internet. And the good thing of this is that even a small local business can go globally through internet. Through e-commerce people can now interact with businesses anytime that is convenient to them. And because these interactions are initiated by customers, the customers also provide a lot of the data for the transaction that may otherwise need to be entered by business staff. This means that some of the work and costs are effectively shifted to customers; this is referred to as 'customer outsourcing'.
However while electronic commerce is emerging, the drawbacks of doing e-commerce have also been visible. Some customers are hesitant to buy online products because they cannot assure the quality of the product. They want to test first the quality of the product and see for their self first the product before buying it. And because of the time of the delivery of the products, sometimes it is more convenient for the customer to walk in a store and leave the store with the product they needed. If the products you want are available in the physical stores in the neighborhood, in this case it is more convenient to walk in that store. E-commerce is only good when the products you want to buy are not available in the neighborhood store. And some of the customers are already cautious of buying online because there are many fraudsters that exist online and if they wouldn’t be careful enough, it could possible steal their money.

To solve this issue the basic principles of customer security should be identify. According to EDC in order to keep the site and customer data safe, the system has to meet the basic principle of customer security. The first is privacy. In this way the information must be kept from unauthorized parties. Next basic principle is integrity to protect the message from not being altered or tampered. The third is authentication in which the sender and recipient must prove their identities to each other. And finally the non-repudiation this will prove that the message was indeed received.

Privacy is handled by encryption. The Public Key Infrastructure or PKI, this is where the message is encrypted by the public key and is decrypted by a private key. The public key is widely distributed, but only the recipient has the private key. To prove the identity of the sender the message should be authenticated. The procedure for authentication is the encrypted message is encrypted again, but this time with a private key. This procedures form the basis of RSA which is used mostly by banks and governments. But somehow, the Public Key Infrastructure is not an efficient way of sending large amounts of information, and is often used only as a first step that is to allow two parties to agree upon a key for symmetric secret key encryption. Here sender and recipient use keys that are generated for the particular message by a third body: a key distribution center. The keys are not identical, but each is shared with the key distribution center, which allows the message to be read. Then the symmetric keys are encrypted in the RSA manner, and rules set under various protocols. Naturally, the private keys have to be kept secret, and most security lapses indeed arise here.
The first pace to handle this issue is through digital signatures and digital certificates. According to Wikipedia, they define digital signature or digital signature scheme is a type of asymmetric cryptography. This scheme typically consists of three algorithms. First is the Key Generation algorithm. This algorithm selects a private key uniformly at random from a set of possible private keys and outputs the private key and the corresponding public key. After that is the signing algorithm, the private key produces a signature when the message is received. And last of all is the signature verifying algorithm in which the signature is verifier and may either accepted or rejected. The digital signatures meet the need for authentication and integrity.

“A plain text message is run through a hash function and so given a value: the message digest. This digest, the hash function and the plain text encrypted with the recipient's public key is sent to the recipient. The recipient decodes the message with their private key, and runs the message through the supplied hash function to that the message digest value remains unchanged (message has not been tampered with). Very often, the message is also timestamped by a third party agency, which provides non-repudiation.” as stated on ECD article about E-commerce Security Issues. And the digital certificates are checked so that the customer will know that the website that receives the information is not set up by other party. Digital certificate is an attachment to an electronic message used for security purposes as defines in webopedia .com. The most common use of a digital certificate is to verify that a user sending a message is who he or she claims to be, and to provide the receiver with the means to encode a reply. There should be a Certification Authority (CA) in order to send an encrypted message. A certification Authority as defined in webopedia is a trusted third-party organization or company that issues digital certificates used to create digital signature and and public –private key pairs. The role of the Certification Authority ( CA ) in this course of action is to guarantee and assure that the individual granted the unique certificate is, in fact, who he or she claims to be. More often than not, this means that the Certification Authority ( CA ) has an arrangement with a financial institution, such as a credit card company, which provides it with information to confirm an individual's claimed identity. Certification Authority ( CA ) are a critical component in data security and electronic commerce for the reason that they guarantee and assure that the two parties who are exchanging information are really who they claim to be.

The CA issues an encrypted digital certificate that contains the applicant 's public key and a variety of other identification information. The CA also makes its own public key readily available through print publicity or perhaps on the intenet . and the recipient of the encrypted message uses the CA's public key in order to decode the digital certificate attached to the message, verifies it as issued by the CA and then obtains the sender's public key and identification information held within the certificate. With this information, the recipient can send an encrypted reply.

Another is Secure Socket Layers. How does this works? “Information sent over the Internet commonly uses the set of rules called TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol). The information is broken into packets, numbered sequentially, and an error control attached. Individual packets are sent by different routes. TCP/IP reassembles them in order and resubmits any packet showing errors. SSL uses PKI and digital certificates to ensure privacy and authentication. The procedure is something like this: the client sends a message to the server, which replies with a digital certificate. Using PKI, server and client negotiate to create session keys, which are symmetrical secret keys specially created for that particular transmission. Once the session keys are agreed, communication continues with these session keys and the digital certificates,” as stated by EDC. The Secure Socket Layer or SSL is a har dware originally de veloped by Netscape Communications Corporation. SSL is basically the industry standard method for protecting web communications. The credit card details can be safely sent with SSL, but once stored on the server they are vulnerable to outsiders hacking into the server and accompanying network. A PCI (peripheral component interconnect: hardware) card is often added for protection, therefore, or another approach altogether is adopted: SET (Secure Electronic Transaction). Developed by Visa and Mastercard, SET uses PKI for privacy, and digital certificates to authenticate the three parties: merchant, customer and bank. More importantly, sensitive information is not seen by the merchant, and is not kept on the merchant's server. Firewalls (software or hardware) protect a server, a network and an individual PC from attack by viruses and hackers. Equally important is protection from malice or carelessness within the system, and many companies use the Kerberos protocol, which uses symmetric secret key cryptography to restrict access to authorized employees, according to EDC.

When you are planning to put up a business online, you should be aware of the security measures in E-commerce because it is hard to win the trust of a customer these days. This will guide you to your business. Be s ure to make your page secure and trusted since most online shoppers would refer to secured sites. Before putting up a business online you should be aware and knowledgeable on how e-commerce is operated. Without enough knowledge about e commerce you would end up with more expenses. The getsafeonline list some important reminders for business selling online.

• Validate new customers and suppliers using published information (e.g. address or phone number).
• Obtain a credit status report before shipping goods on credit.
• E-commerce businesses are liable for any fraud on cards they accept (unless they are using 'Verified by Visa' or 'Mastercard Sercurecode'. These systems can help protect businesses from chargebacks that result from fraud).
• Using the Address Verification System (AVS) and Card Security Code (CSC) checking systems will significantly reduce the risks from e-commerce fraud.
• Authorisation does not guarantee payment and so businesses must do all checks to validate the customer and delivery address.

There are many risk of online shopping if you don’t make sure that the site you are buying to is trusted. And if you are planning to shop online, the first important reminder for you is that you have to make sure that the site is trusted and secured. Mostly, secured web pages have "https://" instead of http:// in the address bar beside the icon. Typically, a secured web page does have an icon or logo in their homepage which will indicates a secure site certification. And also Look for a padlock symbol in the bottom right of the browser window and for the website address to begin with ‘https://.’Aside from checking the site is secured, you should also do a background check of the store. And make sure to review the shipping methods and policies. This will determine what carriers they use, their shipping rates, and if they provide tracking and insurance. Also don’t fail to find out where they ship from. Since goods that are sell online are sometimes sent from international locations, which require customs and extra time.

Reference :
1. http://ezinearticles.com/?What-is-e-Commerce---Advantages-and-Drawbacks!&id=241542
2. http://www.ecommerce-digest.com/ecommerce-security-issues.html
3. http://www.marcbowles.com/sample_courses/amc/ec1/ec1_3.htm
4. http://pr.erau.edu/~winkelj/
5. http://www.youdzone.com/signature.html
6. http://www.ccmostwanted.com/topics/shop.htm
7. http://www.microsoft.com/protect/yourself/finances/shopping_us.mspx
8. http://www.getsafeonline.org/nqcontent.cfm?a_id=1121
9. http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/D/digital_certificate.html

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Clenemae G. Galgao


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PostSubject: Assignment 2   Fri Dec 19, 2008 6:22 pm

Trust is a charged of duty imposed in faith or confidence as one of the aspect in a relationship. It is a credit held to an individual to the person he/she in trusted about something. It is one of the ingredients to stay a relationship strong and without any doubt to someone he/she given some trust.

In terms about e-commerce online between the seller and the buyer, Trust is a major challenge to the consumer acceptance of e-commerce: the lack of trust is an important reason for the hesitant growth in e-commerce and for the reluctance of consumers to engage in online buying transactions. Communicating trustworthiness is therefore a major challenge company’s encounter (Consume Trust in E-Commerce, Zum Inhalt, 2007).

Trust is a concept everybody understands at some personal level, but most people will have trouble enunciating a specific definition of the concept. Some people will have strict measures they use to evaluate their level of trust in a person or company, while others rely on a more subjective "feel" for determining whether to trust somebody.
Just as every person has his or her own way of deciding issues of trust, every role a person plays will also have its own understanding of trust based on the specific goals and priorities of that role. Empathy is great for times that call for compassion and care, but in matters of trust it can be hard to see things from another's point of view. When you walk into a store that you have patronized for years, you have a level or trust about handing over your money in exchange for goods; the merchant may approach this transaction with an entirely different level of anxiety about your ability to pay -- maybe a new employee is ringing you up -- or your ownership of the credit card you proffer. Trust means different things to different people, to different roles, and in different scenarios (Derek Sisson,2000).

(Derek Sisson,2000)gives the cues a user may look for while evaluating trustworthiness in a commerce site:
(1) Is the site professional?
Have the designers taken care to create a coherent interface, or is the site the apparent product of somebody learning how to code HTML? Does the site have typos, grammatical errors, useless animation, or any of a slew of other problems that indicate that the designers or implementers don't know what they are doing? If they can't design a good site, why expect them to be able to handle commerce transactions and fulfillment? Personally, I won't deal with any site that uses the Comic Sans font face because it shouts "built by an amateur" to me.
(2) Does the information architecture make sense?
If the organization of information doesn't appear to have been carefully designed, why expect the site designers to have thought much about fulfillment and payment systems?
(3) Is the site easy to navigate?
Can I find the product I want to buy? Is it easy for me to browser the site looking for interesting things I might want to buy? If the designers can't make the site easy enough to navigate around, why would I trust them to have made a backend that works?
(4) Is the site easy to use?
Can I access and use the site and its offered functionality? Can I search, browse, and purchase from the site? If I can't, because of my browser and preferred browser configuration, then the site designers are telling me that they don't want my business.
(5) Are my questions answered?
If I'm concerned about security or privacy, can I find information that addresses these concerns without having to email a faceless answer-bot? If the designers didn't think about my possible needs before I made my purchase, why expect them to handle my needs after they have my money?
(6) Do other people trust this site?
What's the word about this site? Have customers received their orders correctly?
(7) Am I familiar with this company?
Have I had good experiences with this company before, on or off the web?
(Cool Are the prices reasonable?
Is the price realistic or just too cheap? Will they hit me with an outrageous shipping charge to balance the low price?

Trust is based on experience over time; it can either strengthen or weaken. The process of trust begins when one perceives indications that an online company maybe trustworthy. These indications are known as "forms"(Cheskin, 1999). Manners, professionalism, and sensitivity are examples of these indications. Once the forms representing trustworthiness are strengthened over time, they are transformed into "character traits". These traits include dependability, honesty, and reliability. Once an online company possesses the "character", one will be more likely to purchase items from them. The experience over time is very important in a commercial relationship(Cheskin, 1999).
It really has a big difference between e-commerce transactions online than e-commerce transactions in the traditional way. Transaction online has a lot of risk, because it is lack of physical interaction between the producer and the consumer. The buyer may not physically seen the product he/she is trying to buy, he/she did not know it the company will follow the stated laws and regulation given, is their product will be delivered to them as it is expected. There are a lot questions that maybe running into a buyers mind. While in the traditional way they can talk and communicate with the producer personally, they can observe the product and test it the things they want to buy if its good, it works properly, or they can have it without any hesitation.

In satisfying people in the issue of internet security and privacy trust must be first addressed. Building trust is the most important step in e-commerce. And there are six types of forms for e-commerce trust given by Fred Lee, Trust and E-Commerce. The first one is seals of approval. Symbols of security, such as MasterCard, reassure that proper security measures have been put into place. Second, the brand. The credibility of the online company based on reputation, the promise to deliver certain criteria and a person’s previous experience dealing with the company. Third, its navigation. The ease of finding what you want. Fourth, fulfillment, clear explanations of how orders are processed and what to do if there are any problems. Fifth, presentation, the design of the site must present professionalism and quality. And lastly, sixth, the technology. The site uses new technology to indicate professionalism.

And the three of those forms are the key to e-commerce trust. Navigation, the ease of finding information, is the key form needed for e-commerce trust. A well-known brand and fulfillment are the other two forms involved in e-commerce trust. Navigation must be associated with one or both of the other forms in order for an online business to be consider trustworthy. Strong navigation increases a user’s perception that a web site will meet a user’s needs. For online businesses with lesser-known or newer brands, navigation and fulfillment are key to gaining e-commerce trust. These businesses must have sites with strong navigation and strong fulfillment in order to compete with the well-known brands. As navigation and fulfillment improve, so does e-commerce trust. Also, the most trusted companies were the companies that were well-known and most familiar. The least trusted companies were companies that were lesser-known(Cheskin, 1999). For example, Borders and Amazon.com were the most trustworthy bookseller sites over Barnes and Noble and Books.com. Another example involves video sites: more people would trust Blockbuster Video over Reel.com. Overall, the companies that have "real-world" stores tend to be more trusted than web-based companies. However, some web-based companies, such as Amazon.com, are gaining more appeal than "real-world" stores. Consequently, well-known web-based companies possess the power to operate in the real world (Cheskin, 1999).However, users are more familiar with security techniques, such as "cookies" and "encryption", than the specific security company. These security companies may gain more credibility if they were to associate themselves more with security techniques, such as motto or logo design. And with trust the most considerable thing so that companies can be trusted by their customers are the following: one, a clearly stated return policy, relates to fulfillment. Second, stated and authenticated policies of security and encryption, relates to seals of approval. Third, Ability to withdraw from a transaction, relates to fulfillment. And lastly, the fourth one, Efficient and easy navigation (Trust and E-commerce, Fred Lee).
(Consumer Trust In E-Commerce Web Sites Alarmingly Low, Consumer Reports WebWatch Research Find,2002)"As consumers settle into the realities of a world where the Internet has changed many aspects of how they live their lives, they are starting to question more and more how much they should trust Web content," said Beau Brendler, director of Consumer Reports WebWatch. "Using the Web should not be a game of 20 questions. Consumer Reports WebWatch will encourage sites to be more transparent about the financial interests behind the content they publish, and provide tools to help consumers feel more confident about using the Web."

In concert with those findings, Consumer Reports WebWatch will promote a core set of guidelines for Web sites to help improve the credibility of online information. The guidelines come from this survey research, and as a result of extensive review by Consumer Reports WebWatch's diverse advisory board.
The guidelines and research findings can be accessed at the project's Web site, www.consumerwebwatch.org, which launched officially today.

Consumer Reports WebWatch believes Web sites will promote Web credibility if they adopt these basic policies:
1. Identity. Web sites should clearly disclose the physical location where they are produced, including an address, a telephone number or e-mail address. Sites should clearly disclose their ownership, private or public, naming their parent company. Sites should clearly disclose their purpose and mission.
2. Advertising and Sponsorships. Sites should clearly distinguish advertising from news and information, using labels or other visual means. This includes "in-house" advertising or cross-corporate ad sponsorships. Search engines, shopping tools and portals should clearly disclose paid result-placement advertising, so consumers may distinguish between objective search results and paid ads. Sites should clearly disclose relevant business relationships, including sponsored links to other sites. For example: A site that directs a reader to another site to buy a book should clearly disclose any financial relationship between the two sites. Sites should identify sponsors. The site's sponsorship policies should be clearly noted in accompanying text or on an "About Us" or "Site Center" page.
3. Customer Service. Sites engaged in consumer transactions should clearly disclose relevant financial relationships with other sites, particularly when these relationships affect the cost to a consumer. Sites should clearly disclose all fees charged, including service, transaction and handling fees, and shipping costs. This information should be disclosed before the ordering process begins. Sites should clearly state and enforce policies for returning unwanted items or canceling transactions or reservations.
4. Corrections. Sites should diligently seek to correct false, misleading or incorrect information. Sites should prominently display a page or section of the site where incorrect information is corrected or clarified. Sites should strive to mark content with its published date when failing to do so could mislead consumers. Sites should clearly state their policy on a consumer's rights if a purchase is made based on incorrect information on the site.
5. Privacy. Site privacy policies should be easy to find and clearly, simply stated. Sites should clearly disclose how personal data from site visitors and customers will be used. Personal data includes name, address, phone number and credit card number. Sites should disclose whether they use browser-tracking mechanisms such as "cookies," and other technologies such as Web beacons, bugs and robots. Sites should explain how data collected from them will be used. Sites should notify customers of changes to privacy policies and provide an easy opt-out alternative.
Trust must be acquired from both consumer and producer. Not just by producer alone, or not just by consumer alone. Both should build such factor in their own ways on how to deal with it. even though its so hard to gained sometimes but each individual must be patient in doing such to reach the things they want.


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Mark Van M. Buladaco


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PostSubject: Re: Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)   Sat Dec 20, 2008 10:10 am


“Trust is viewed as being an important aspect of successful electronic commerce”

In electronic commerce, Trust is the key element of commerce, both for traditional models and, more recently, for eCommerce. Unlike its traditional counterpart, eCommerce relies on trust being created and maintained with the help of digital devices and services. E-commerce businesses have long struggled with finding the best strategies for optimizing the performance of their sites in terms of minimizing shopping cart abandonment and maximizing overall site conversions. These are laudable goals, but for many sites, focusing only on these issues and not looking at the bigger picture means leaving money on the table.

In “The Role of Trust in E-Commerce Sales” by Eric Enge, Search Engine Watch, Jul 11, 2007, “I spoke about this issue at length with Nigel Ravenhill, Director of Marketing Communications at ScanAlert, the people who offer the HackerSafe service. This service audits and certifies your Web site's e-commerce infrastructure as being secure. Putting their logo on your site assures the consumer (or your B2B customer) that the information they submit to your site will be protected from, well, hackers.” HackerSafe has been subjected to A/B testing by a large number of retailers, where half of their visitors see the HackerSafe certification, and half do not. What were the results of these tests? Visitors who saw the HackerSafe logo converted at a 14 percent higher rate on average. Pretty significant. ScanAlert has published additional research that provides further visibility into shopping behavior on the Web. What ScanAlert did was examine in detail the elapsed time between a user's first visit to an e-commerce Web site (measured by setting a cookie), and the visit in which they purchased something (latent conversion delay). To make this more interesting, they started measuring this back in May 2005, and have continued to measure it through May 2007, allowing us to see how this behavior has changed over time. ScanAlert has participated in 480 tests by 470 organizations covering a wide range of e-commerce activities.

As Kabir Sehgal stated (How Understanding Trust Benefits E-Commerce, 2007),
To associate trust with risk is critical for e-commerce practitioners. The e-commerce market is indeed growing; in 2003, US retail e-commerce generated $56 billion, up from $44.3 billion a year earlier (eMarketer, 2004). Despite the economic growth of e-commerce, many consumers are still concerned that online transactions are untrustworthy. To many, ecommerce is unreliable, untrustworthy, and risky. Ecommerce must overcome several obstacles, from reduced social cues to assuring consumers of a website’s security, in order to build trust. E-commerce consumers have not formed personal and intimate bonds with the shipping clerks or sales consultants of Amazon.com, like they may have at a brick-and-mortar bookshop.This is not to say that websites cannot reinforce more personable trust found at brick and mortar shops. The website Meetup.com brings millions of people together by organizing events: person A can meet person B and then keep up to date with each other by using Meetup.com service (Sander, 2005). The website keeps trust alive by using technology to help organise. Even though Meetup.com is not an example of ecommerce, it shows that technology, namely the Internet, can aid and abet already trusting relationships. It serves as the “sociological superglue” to relationships (Putnam, 2001). This is an important lesson to learn for e-commerce practitioners— technology can reinforce already trusting relationships. E-commerce often fails to meet Proposition. E-commerce is outside the social circle of customers: the customer has very little to evaluate a particular website since the social cues are removed. E-commerce does not always demonstrate ability, benevolence, and integrity – therefore, it has difficulty demonstrating the signalling systems of trustworthiness. I will use three examples to illustrate how e-commerce fails to adhere to Proposition. These examples relate to lack of automation, lack of social cues, and lack of assurance. As a result, some “95% of consumers have declined to provide personal information to Web sites,” and 63 percent of these did not do so because “they do not ‘trust’ those collecting the data,” (Hoffman et al., 1999). While the benefits of e-commerce cannot be ignored, one negative is that it takes away the personal contact of face to face sales. This is a very important point as face to face customer interaction helps to establish a bond of trust with consumers. The only way any business can succeed whether it is an online business or a regular brick and mortar store is if it attracts more customers and retains old ones. However in e-commerce, since everything is done online with no human interaction whatsoever, it becomes rather difficult to establish a bond of trust with a customer. Gaining the trust of an online customer is thus of the utmost important to any e-commerce business. So how does a business go about doing this? How does a business convince its customers that they are real and that whatever information a customer provides, it is safe private and encrypted? The answer is actually quite simple through the use of seals of security and the building of trust. Today the most common worry for online shoppers is the fact that their identity or personal information might be stolen and used for illegal purposes. According to a recent study over 80% of Americans are worried about becoming identity theft victims by shopping online, while a further 65% feel that they do not get a sense of security when they make online purchases. What this shows is that with the recent increase in identity theft and stolen credit card information many people are becoming weary of shopping online. So how can a business deal with this problem? How can an e-commerce website assure its customers that their personal information is safe and encrypted? Well the best way to do this is by having a clear cut privacy and security policy posted visibly on a website. Another way is to show that your e-commerce website is secure with an SSL certificate that appears in the form of a tiny padlock at the bottom of the browser. Many consumers nowadays also look for third-party business identity authentication such as the VeriSign Secured Seal, which provides proof that this website is indeed a legitimate one. Another popular privacy and security seal that consumers look for is the TRUSTe sign which symbolizes that the website owner has committed to disclosing their privacy practices to the general public and is backed by TRUSTe's assurance process. Automation helps to increase the likelihood of Proposition and is a signaling system for trustworthiness. Take an ecommerce website that requires laborious efforts from the consumer: too many fields to complete and no automatic verification email for the purchaser. This e-commerce website is demonstrating that it is not able or competent to deal with many fast transactions, there are no signs of benevolence because the user has to spend more time, the website seems unprofessional, untrustworthy, and without integrity. It fails to adhere to Proposition 2. To be sure, it is important that the information is recorded accurately and securely, but one of the primary advantages for e-commerce is that of automation, thereby driving down the transaction cost of an order (Lee, 2003). It is not only a way to demonstrate trustworthiness but a good business practice, playing to the market channel’s advantage. Automation also leads to predictability – an e-commerce website will operate in a particular manner . Many e-commerce websites do not understand that the “lack of automation really hinders in the efficiency and speed of meeting the customer needs,” (Lee, 2003). To automate the e-commerce system is to signal trustworthiness to the trustor. Social cues help to increase the likelihood of Proposition 2 and are a signaling system for trustworthiness: “Human trust decisions, however, are also based on affective reactions, which can be triggered by interpersonal cues,” . E-commerce removes the social cues and increases the anonymity for trustors-cum-shoppers . Take a website that has text-only ordering forms with no options to speak with a real person. This website is demonstrating that it is not able to be personable, there are no signs of benevolence because of reduced social cues, and it seems removed from the knowable world, a world without integrity. Such a website fails not only fails to adhere to Proposition 2 and demonstrate trustworthiness, it is not doing good business. That is, many customers look for interpersonal social cues, and the e-commerce website is failing to meet this desire. Indeed, the Internet medium supposedly removes social and interpersonal cues from “real life” interaction: is it not just a sunk cost of ecommerce ? This is not necessarily true, as a solution will be presented later, and e-commerce practitioners should recognize that social cues are a signaling system for trustworthiness. If I can see or hear someone, I gain an understanding of the person albeit a small one. This understanding can be enough to convince me to complete a transaction with the trustee. To increase social cues is to signal trustworthiness to the trustor.

Eventually, trust has an important role for electronic commerce. Thus, we need it for the betterment and development of our future


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Eric Ibasco


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PostSubject: Assignment 2   Mon Dec 22, 2008 7:06 pm

Trust is the one important factor you can give to the others, that trust is become the big role that a single person have. And making a promise can be level to a trust, that the trust you make will be the aspect that make you good. Trust is a concept everybody understands at some personal level, but most people will have trouble enunciating a specific definition of the concept. Some people will have strict measures they use to evaluate their level of trust in a person or company, while others rely on a more subjective "feel" for determining whether to trust somebody. Trust is can be get hold on a certain person and business. Business like in selling and buying market area or the commerce they say. Trust is viewed as being an important aspect of successful electronic commerce. E-commerce is become the new trend of transacting something in an electronic form or way. Another means is E-commerce is a new kind of shopping experience in a new medium, but this experience is still new enough that the vast majority of people who buy online learned how to buy offline. That all the goods or things you want to buy will be process through internet which is the World Wide Web and electronic card. And having this kind of business, you must make a good customer service or transaction, that your site must be professional, good looking, simple, clean, constant and yet trustworthy. Because having a trustworthy site the customer have also a trust to your site, that they can assure that all their confidential personal information like the bank account is totally safe.

As the use of the Internet continues to grow, websites are assuming greater importance as the public face of business. Furthermore, the revenues generated by e-commerce systems mean that organizations are becoming ever more reliant on them as core elements of their business. With this high level of dependency upon the services provided by e-commerce systems, it is essential that they are protected from the threats posed by hackers, viruses, fraud and denial-of-service attacks. Every business should take steps to secure their e-commerce systems, although smaller businesses may choose to work with third party specialists to implement some of the more sophisticated security controls. This guide looks at the security threats posed to e-commerce systems and the damage they can potentially cause to your business. It provides advice on how best to address these threats, by identifying the risks that they pose and implementing the appropriate level of security controls to counter them.

E-commerce systems are based upon Internet use, which provides open and easy communications on a global basis. However, because the Internet is unregulated, unmanaged and uncontrolled, it poses a wide range of risks and threats to the systems operating on it. The use of the Internet means that your internal IT and e-commerce systems are potentially accessible by anyone, irrespective of their location.

Some of the more common threats that hackers pose to e-commerce systems include:

1. carrying out denial-of-service (DoS) attacks that stop access to authorized users of a website, so that the site is forced to offer a reduced level of service or, in some cases, ceases operation completely

2. gaining access to sensitive data such as price lists, catalogs and valuable intellectual property, and altering, destroying or copying it

3. altering your website, thereby damaging your image or directing your customers to another site
gaining access to financial information about your business or your customers, with a view to perpetrating fraud

4. using viruses to corrupt your business data

Impact upon the business
All of these risks can have a significant impact upon a business running an e-commerce service. The potential business implications of a security incident include the following:

1. Direct financial loss as a consequence of fraud or litigation.

2. Subsequent loss as a result of unwelcome publicity.

3. Criminal charges if you are found to be in breach of the Data Protection or Computer Misuse Acts, or other regulation on e-commerce.

4. Loss of market share if customer confidence is affected by a DoS attack.

5. The images presented by your business, together with the brands under which you trade, are valuable assets. It is important to recognizes that the use of e-commerce creates new ways for both image and brands to be attacked.

Trust is not a characteristic that inheres in an e-commerce site; trust is a judgment made by the user, based on general experience learned from being a consumer and from the perception of the particular merchant. In every transaction, both roles of buyer and seller must make a decision about trusting the other participant. Sometimes this decision is conscious, sometimes it's unconscious and relies on a person's default beliefs about trustworthiness in general. For example, some people I have talked with for this essay approach commerce with a general level of trust; these people by default trust merchants, but question a merchant's trustworthiness if they receive worrying feedback or negative cues. In contrast, many people don't especially trust any merchant, and must assemble much positive feedback and encounter positive cues before deciding to trust a merchant.

And these are the practical ways in which organizations can address trust through implementing security measures.

Is the site professional?
Have the designers taken care to create a coherent interface, or is the site the apparent product of somebody learning how to code HTML? Does the site have typos, grammatical errors, useless animation, or any of a slew of other problems that indicate that the designers or implementers don't know what they are doing? If they can't design a good site, why expect them to be able to handle commerce transactions and fulfillment? Personally, I won't deal with any site that uses the Comic Sans font face because it shouts "built by an amateur" to me.

Does the information architecture make sense?
If the organization of information doesn't appear to have been carefully designed, why expect the site designers to have thought much about fulfillment and payment systems?

Is the site easy to navigate?
Can I find the product I want to buy? Is it easy for me to browser the site looking for interesting things I might want to buy? If the designers can't make the site easy enough to navigate around, why would I trust them to have made a back end that works?

Is the site easy to use?
Can I access and use the site and its offered functionality? Can I search, browse, and purchase from the site? If I can't, because of my browser and preferred browser configuration, then the site designers are telling me that they don't want my business.

Are my questions answered?
If I'm concerned about security or privacy, can I find information that addresses these concerns without having to email a faceless answer-bot? If the designers didn't think about my possible needs before I made my purchase, why expect them to handle my needs after they have my money?

Do other people trust this site?
What's the word about this site? Have customers received their orders correctly?

Am I familiar with this company?
Have I had good experiences with this company before, on or off the web?

Are the prices reasonable?
Is the price realistic or just too cheap? Will they hit me with an outrageous shipping charge to balance the low price?

The factors that produce a sense of trustworthiness need to be identified, in their entirety. Their interactions need to be understood, and their relative importance determined. Understanding the roles of these different factors would allow online retailers to ease consumers' concerns, and could hasten the maturation of Web retailing.

Seals of Approval -- Symbols, like VeriSign and Visa, designed to re-assure the visitor that security has been established. The companies that provide these seals of approval are referred to in this report as security brands.

Brand -- The Corporation’s promise to deliver specific attributes and its credibility based on reputation and the visitor's possible previous experience.

Navigation -- The ease of finding what the visitor seeks.

Fulfillment -- Clearly indicates how orders will be processed, and provides information on how to seek recourse if there are problems.

Presentation -- Design attributes that connote quality and professionalism.

Technology -- State of the art connotes professionalism, even if it's difficult to use.

Page as Agent
The major focus on adaptation in the E-Commerce site is that of page as agent. In this paradigm, each web page has the responsibility to present its information in a manner which ensures that the user’s needs are met. In this respect, each page has information to present, and a user profile which represents the information that can be obtained from the user’s browsing history. Using these data, and hard wired rules about how to construct web pages in specific styles, each page agent constructs a web page for display on the user’s browser. In fact, this is an extension of the principles of adaptive server page technology. The rules available to a page agent are specified centrally, and are dependent on the site’s author. In our experiments, we concentrate on aspects of trust facilitation and personality construction.

The User Profile
The key to the adaptation and maintenance of trust reasoning web site remains the user’s profile. While the site uses web pages to communicate with the user, the only means the site has to be communicated to from the user are the user’s click through. In other words, we do not require anything of a user other than that they use the site as a normal web site. From a user’s browsing history, we attempt to create a meaningful user profile. Naturally, this results in a usually less than perfect representation of a user. In our initial implementations of the user profile this is reflected in the simplicity of the data we aim to create. In this scheme, a user is represented by a few items of data only:
• Trust value estimate
• Personality inferred
• Browsing history, this interaction and previous visits
• Other data able to be gleaned, including browser type, machine type, email address, etc. as possible.

Thus, we do not require any user information above that which is readily available to any web site. Additional information is inferred and not guaranteed to be correct, thus is not available out with the site, and is of little relevance anywhere else in any case.

Trust Reasoning Pages
Each page in the site is able to reason with and about perceived user trust in order to attempt to facilitate and increase the level of trust the user has in the site. To do this, each page uses the browsing history and trust value estimate. In addition, perceived personality and actual browsing behavior can be used to estimate. Reasoning about trust requires that each page has a sensible foundation to work from. There are, in fact, only two real situations in this scenario:
• User is new to site, no interaction history available
• User is not new; interaction history (however limited) is available

Both of these cases can be handled by the trust formalization in, and subsequent interactions serve to increase our estimates accuracy by providing more data.

Making trust of an individual person or customer is so hard or not easy to achieve. Even it is not in an electronic way or form like shopping trough internet or which we called e-commerce, that even it is just in a typical business you have like standing some store in your house, that in e-commerce you must always secure the personal information of the customers, you can also do this by transacting the buyer or the customer in a good communication because having this good manners like you must give all the comfort or the good ways in order to give the customer some good, high service and satisfaction, that customer is always right. So that the image of your business now will become great to them.

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julie ann niones


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PostSubject: Re: Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)   Fri Dec 26, 2008 9:48 am

Trust is just a simple word that is very important to man. Trusting someone and being trusted is something that you can’t be getting in an instance, in a blink of an eye. Trusting it has been a part to human personality that is given and gain by people who are worthy of that trust. The word trust is just a single expression other than with of the essence of importance to humanity. Wherever you go trust is as important as water. And in addition to that, as stated by (Heathfield, 2008) is that according to Dr. Duane C. Tway, Jr. in his 1993 dissertation, A Construct of Trust, "There exists today, no practical construct of Trust that allows us to design and implement organizational interventions to significantly increase trust levels between people. We all think we know what Trust is from our own experience, but we don't know much about how to improve it. Why? I believe it is because we have been taught to look at Trust as if it were a single entity."

Trust forms the foundation for effective communication, employee retention, and employee motivation and contribution of discretionary energy, the extra effort that people voluntarily invest in work (Heathfield, 2008). Trust, it is something that man are seeking to get to everyone. It is the feeling of to be trusted and to trust. It is a very serious possession to mankind. It is a possession that is so valuable. It is as precious as diamond that can not be bought. It is too hard to obtain. It is in the vein of the worth when you join a competition like an amazing race and win. Isn’t the winning price is a very worthy thing to achieve. It is the price that you have worked so hard for. It is something gained that you are worthy to be entrusted of something important. It is just similar to trust. To be able to gain the trust from someone is a very worthy achievement and you have to keep it, maintain it to last.

The importance of trust in mankind is so important. Its essence is as essential as our basic needs. It is like food, like clothing, and like shelter. Once you have it or gain it you will have the feeling of satisfaction for the reason that it is not easy to get hold of. Once you are entrusted by a person in its trust you have to keep that trust, maintain it. But, on the other hand, once this trust once is broke it would create a big problem. It is the same as living in hell. In addition to that, if ever you broke a person’s trust, it won’t do well to you. And also if you want to win it back would be hard. To illustrate, it just like the song by Parokya ni Edgar. In their song it states in comparison that trust and chocolate. It says that when a chocolate melts it would be hard to remold it into its original form just like the trust that once broke it is hard to gain it back.

Trust is a state of mind that is difficult or impossible to measure (Ciscoetl, 2008). Just looking to your surroundings trust is a vital thing to all. Any where you look trust is always there. Within your family trust is an important thing that gets a hold to keep the whole family together. Once this trust to each other is lost then the presence of love and peace in the family will fade away in grey. Fighting and hatred will reign in the family. Friendship, trust is also important to keep this friendship last. If the trust within friends is lost probably your best friend will be you greatest enemy.

No single person would want to lose the trust that they worked so hard for to obtain, right? In every aspect of our lives trust is very essential. Even in businesses, trust is also important in the success of an industry, in electronic commerce. In addition to that, in business it is important because it gives you the sense of security about a trusted party (Building E-Commerce Trust Applying Usability Principles). If trust does not exist then you cannot gain customers. But why is that so? (Bloomgarden, Trust: The Secret Weapon of Effective Business Leaders) states that trust plays an important role in a business’s corporate strategy because trust brings into vivid focus the characteristics that make today’s leaders successful, and the principles and techniques they use to earn the confidence of employees, colleagues, customers and the public.

In addition to that importance of trust is as stated in (E-Commerce Relationships, 2005) that there are wide range of benefits of trust in electronic commerce and those are lowering transaction costs (Gulati, 1995), promoting desirable behaviors, reducing the extent of formal contracts, and facilitating dispute resolutions (Ring & Van de Ven, 1994). Thus, a strong establishment of trust is very vital for the success of a business in particular to those who are engaged in electronic commerce.

According to (E-Commerce Relationship, 2005), it states that in electronic commerce trust has its two forms: the first form is trust in technology relating to institutional structural assurances and security mechanisms embedded in electronic commerce technologies and relationship trust referring to trading partners competent, predictability, reliability and benevolence in the electronic commerce relationship.

In addition to the statement stated above, as stated by (Doyle & Melanson, 2001; Hoffman et al., 1999; Jarvenpaa et al., 2000; Narayandas, Caravella & Deighton, 2002) that trust plays a significant role in electronic commerce because of the following reasons: anonymity, lack of control, lack of physical proximity, potential opportunism, and inefficiencies in web technology (E-Commerce Relationship, 2005).

Faith, Belief, and Hope are synonymous to the word trust. Gaining loyal customers is impossible if trust is not gained. To trust is to give hope. To trust is to have faith. To trust is to give hope. But in order for us to understand the importance of trust in electronic commerce is that to have knowledge in four areas. According to (Building e-Commerce Trust Applying Usability Principles) these areas that are needed to understand the importance of trust are Internet, electronic commerce, web design, electronic commerce trust and usability. For better understanding, in addition to that, it explains that Internet is the fastest growing mediums in the world and thus, the success f it makes it indispensable for companies to have an online presence. And with the rapid growth of Internet and as it gain popularity among the people around the globe it makes the distances between people shorter and makes the market competitions to be global.

In addition to that areas in the importance of trust to electronic commerce is because electronic commerce is an integral part of electronic business (or e-business) in which it involves buying and selling of goods and services by the use of electronic means. And because of this it gives an option to consumers to shop online (or cross shopping).

To gain the trust of your consumers is the web design. To define, web design is the process of developing a website which is in accordance to pre-set codes. Websites, consumers use electronic commerce websites because they wanted convenience and ease in its usage thus, when designing it websites should be simple, clear, easy and transparent. Other than that consumers wanted to feel assured that the information they submitted are safe. And in order for them feel that their information is secured, according to (Enge, 2007) that putting a HackerSafe service logo on your electronic commerce website assures the consumer (or business-to-business customer) that the information submitted in the electronic commerce website is protected from hackers.

In addition, according to the article “Building E-Commerce Trust Applying Usability Principles” is that there are factors that increase the level of trust in electronic commerce. And those are through the increase in experience with the Internet, increase of numbers of hour’s online, use the web for financial services, and lastly, significantly relying on electronic mail. But the most important to gain trust is the facilitating the buying process of customers as much as possible.

The trust has ad been a vital role business more specifically in electronic commerce because from the word of (Heathfield, 2008) says that from additional research by Tway and others shows that trust is the basis for much of the environment you want to create in your work place. And trust is the necessary precursor for the following: feeling able to rely upon a person, cooperating with and experiencing teamwork with a group, taking thoughtful risks, and experiencing believable communication.

The importance of trust has been significantly seen on how security measures are implemented. Having a strong security on your websites will invite consumers or give an impression that your electronic commerce website is worthy of their trust. But, on the other hand, there is an article (The Importance of Trust in the eCommerce Segment, 2007) that I read regarding the importance of trust in electronic commerce that the cause of purchase hesitation by the consumers to without national or well-known trusted brands is because of the lack of consumer confidence. It is because data security is always a threat, mediocre merchant performance consistently and overwhelming represents the greatest risk to online shoppers and so, for them to be able gain the trust of consumers to support their products and services through lowering of prices. To win the hearts of the consumers is through price. It is said that price is the most important factor in a buyer’s decision to make a purchase online or not. In the present day, we could see that there are lots of consumers who do their transactions electronically, mostly through the use of internet. Try visiting some of websites we could see that if you compare the prices or the total expenses doing a transaction through internet and through a manual process (or the normal process) you could come up with the conclusion that the consumers are assured that doing transaction online is much of its advantage on their part. Therefore, the implementation of strong security measures in your website will be a great help to you in order for you to gain your consumer’s trust. And in addition to that it is a vital thing that you implement security strictly, gain the trust of your consumers so that you business will keep running.

Trust is just a simple word. It is already on us. We could trust the people if you wanted to. It is a choice. In our everyday life trust is vital possession to us. It is gained and it could be given. The word trust is all around us. It is always with us. Where ever we go and whatever we do trust is there. It lives within us. We could see trust in our family, friends, and work and even in the success of a business. Trust plays an important role to everything we do; to each one of us.


1. Gulati, R. (1995). "Does familiarity breed trust? The implications of repeated ties for contractual choice in alliances." Academy of Management Journal, (38) 1, 85-112
2. Ring, P.S. & Van de Ven, A.H. (1994). "Developing processes of cooperative inter-organizational relationships" Academy of Management Review, 19, 90-118.

3. E-Commerce Relationships: The Impact of Trust on Relationship Continuity. (2005). International Journal of Commerce and Management. March 1, 2005, from http://goliath.ecnext.com/coms2/gi_0198-23916/E-commerce-relationships-the-impact.html

4. Building E-CommerceTrust Applying Usability Principles. http://www.nicoladeproft.be/pages/ecommercetrust/conclusion.html

5. The Importance of Trust in the eCommerce Segment (2007). eCommerce Time. June 24, 2007 from http://www.ecommercenews.org/e-commerce-news-010/0274-062907-ecommerce-news.html

6. Ciscoetl (2008). "How Important is Trust, Really?" from http://ciscoetl.wordpress.com/2008/02/27/how-important-is-trust-really/

7. Doyle, T., & Melanson, J. (2001). "Business to business web exchanges: Easier hyped than done." Journal of Business Strategy, (22) 3, 10-13.

8. Hoffman, D.L., Novak, T.P., & Peralta, M. (1999). "Association for computing machinery." Communications of the ACM, 42, 80-85.

9. Narayandas, D., Caravella, M., & Deighton, J. (2002). "The impact of internet exchanges on B2B distribution." Journal of Academy of Marketing Science, (30) 4, 500-505.

10. Jarvenpaa, S.L., Tractinsky, N., & Vitale, M. (2000). "Consumer trust in an Internet store. Information Technology and Management", 1, 45-71.

11. Heathfield, Susan M. (2008). "Trust Rules: The Most Important Secret Abut Trust What is Trust?" New York Times from http://humanresources.about.com/od/workrelationships/a/trust_rules.htm

12. Bloomgarden, Kathy. "Trust: The Secret Weapon of Effective Business Leaders." from http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?r=1&ISBN=9780312349844&ourl=Trust%2FKathy-Bloomgarden#TABS

13. Enge, Eric (2007). "The Role of Trust in E-Commerce Sales." July 11, 2007, from http://searchenginewatch.com/3626363
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Richard Mark Daliba


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PostSubject: Re: Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)   Wed Jan 28, 2009 6:42 pm

Electronic commerce, commonly known as e-commerce or eCommerce, consists of the buying and selling of products or services over electronic systems such as the Internet and other computer networks. The amount of trade conducted electronically has grown extraordinarily since the spread of the Internet. A wide variety of commerce is conducted in this way, spurring and drawing on innovations in electronic funds transfer, supply chain management, Internet marketing, online transaction processing, electronic data interchange (EDI), inventory management systems, and automated data collection systems. Modern electronic commerce typically uses the World Wide Web at least at some point in the transaction's lifecycle, although it can encompass a wider range of technologies such as e-mail as well.

Being connected wirelessly and wired are part of having connectivity to each and everyone and e-commerce being part of that kind of connection remains stable on how it entirely works. Any kinds of transaction that uses any form of electronic communication falls under e-commerce even though commercial and non-commercial activities with regards to connectivity and e-commerce, trust is viewed as an important aspect for a successful electronic commerce.A large percentage of electronic commerce is conducted entirely electronically for virtual items such as access to premium content on a website, but most electronic commerce involves the transportation of physical items in some way. Online retailers are sometimes known as e-tailers and online retail is sometimes known as e-tail. Almost all big retailers have electronic commerce presence on the World Wide Web.

According to a website” Trust is a concept everybody understands at some personal level, most people will have trouble enunciating a specific definition of the concept. Some people will have strict measures they use to evaluate their level of trust in a person or company, while others rely on a more subjective “feel for determining whether to trust somebody.” Truly trust is really a great factor involve in e-commerce even a merchant could not sell a single product without owning a trust on his or her customer. This fact was truly meant for all people involve in the e-commerce itself and should not be taken for granted. Transactions should be deal between buyers and sellers, thus trust should be on both parties.

Just as every person has his or her own way of deciding issues of trust, every role a person plays will also have its own understanding of trust based on the specific goals and priorities of that role. Empathy is great for times that call for compassion and care, but in matters of trust it can be hard to see things from another's point of view. When you walk into a store that you have patronized for years, you have a level or trust about handing over your money in exchange for goods; the merchant may approach this transaction with an entirely different level of anxiety about your ability to pay -- maybe a new employee is ringing you up -- or your ownership of the credit card you proffer. Trust means different things to different people, to different roles, and in different scenarios.

Trust can mean such things as the following:
• Do I believe that what someone says is true and factual?
If you tell me that you will pay me back next week for what you borrow today, do I believe you?
• Do I agree with a person or company's goal or what they stand for?
• Do I believe that a person or company's goals and/or priorities match mine? If I registered at a commerce site and the subsequently sent me newsletters and notices, is that really a service to me?
• Do I believe that a site's presentation of its informational content is objective? Is a site mixing advertising into its supposed editorial content?

As researchers and practitioners have focused on the usability of web sites it has become clear that the usability of a web site plays a large part in allowing successful transactions to take place. Usability is generally a product of good design - a conscious attempt by the creators of a web site or any other product to anticipate the needs of their users and cater for them. One of the goals of designing a good web site is to establish oneself as a professional, credible organization. The quality of design, the effort taken to present clear, coherent and relevant information, appropriate use of graphics, etc. may be seen to serve a similar function as high quality interior design in a regular store or office. The marble pillars in a Bank imply permanence, solidity, wealth. They are intended to inspire trust in the Bank's customers.
The design recommendations from web usability studies can therefore be seen as recommendations that will improve the likelihood of a user completing a transaction on the site. In the most general sense, good design (and good usability) can therefore be seen to increase the trust a user might place in a web site. Issues of usability design also seem to be directly linked to the degree to which users trust a site. In addition to issues of branding the Cheskin study also found that navigation significantly impacts perceptions of a web site meeting consumer needs, particularly for lesser-known brands. For well-known brands, when fulfillment is weak, good navigation plays an important role in increasing the perception that a web site can meet customer needs. Although it is clear that good design and good usability play an important part in encouraging users to interact with a web site, many issues of design are static, and are fixed at the time of implementation. While good design attempts to provide the best solution for a wide population of users, software - and the web in particular - allows the personalization and tailoring of information to small audiences. The dynamics of trust, and the ability to adapt a design to improve the fit with a user, requires a more active approach to page design.
Here are 3 ways to make your website more trustworthy:
1. Create a clean, professional website from the start, or redesign today.
The most important way to get visitors to trust your website is to make it as professional, and clean as possible. Sites designed without usability in mind or those that look unprofessional will be exactly that in the eyes of the user.
2. Leave out the ads on your business or ecommerce website.
If you have an ecommerce website selling products, then placing ads with your products shouldn’t even be a thought. The same thing goes for lead generating or services websites where your visitors fill out a contact or application form.
3. Use services that provide a seal like Verisign SSL, or the BBB.
These services aren’t free or even cheap in many cases but they do help to create trust.
Focusing purely on customer confidence and building trust, some of the key points to consider are:
• Look Professional.. - Good web design, creating a clean site which looks professional - demonstrate that you are a business
• ..but with Personality - Let your personality and business ethos bleed into your site as well - clean web design does not mean sterile design - injecting elements of your business personality into your site can help to build a relationship with the customer
• Prove that you are real.. - Demonstrate to the customer that you are a real, physical business, even though you are selling online. Include contact details - an address and telephone number - as well as an email address. Consider adding images showing your business, or even yourself - if appropriate.
• ..and that you know what you are doing - Include information which demonstrates that you know about online selling. Some elements are legal requirements (e.g. Company Number if you are a UK Limited Company, Privacy Policy and Data Protection Statement, etc) - others will help to reinforce that you are a real business. For example, information about the history of the business and it's goals, aims and objectives.
• Reassure the customer.. - Make sure you have relevant policies available and clearly worded - for example, customers will feel reassured that you have a well stated returns policy - because at the back of their mind, they do not trust you yet, and want to know you will still be there if things go wrong. Include information on secure shopping and how you will protect their information.
• ..but don't try too hard! - Heavy handed marketing is an immediate trust-breaker. Everybody has been told by their mother (normally) that "if it sounds too good to be true - it probably is" - so don't make anything sound too good to be true! Of course you must advertise your good points, unique features and fantastic special offers, but do not overstate them. Let the product speak for itself, and reinforce this with your offers, testimonials and other elements.
These were the model aspects that were related to trust.
Pre-interactional Filters: First of all, it is noteworthy that individuals differ as to their General Propensity to trust. A second important factor is people's foreknowledge and expectations with respect to a certain industry or company. The latter can be due to Reputation, i.e. the strength of a company's brand name, previous interactions on- and/or off-line, or reports from trusted third parties (hence, Transference of trust).
Interface Properties: The development of trust is strongly affected by one's first impression of a commercial system. Thus, graphic design and layout are encapsulated in the Appeal component. Overview refers to the extent to which the site's commercial offerings and resources are made explicit by organizing its content in a manner relevant to the end user. The Usability component refers to the system's reliability, ease-of-use and familiarity in terms of domain model, classification schemes and terminology.
Informational Content: Information about Products & Services should be complete, relevant and structured in a way that reduces user costs. The Company component reflects the need to communicate the merchant's history, values and commitment. Security refers to the completeness and the understandability of information about financial risk and guarantees. Privacy describes the vendor's openness with respect to its privacy policy. The commercial party's competence can be assessed by comparing the first two components, whereas the relationship's inherent risk can be evaluated in the light of the last two components.
Relationship Management: The first type of trust to take place is conversion trust, where users gain enough trust to engage in a commercial relationship with an online merchant. Whether that trust will be honored in the long term will depend on the follow-up to the initial transaction, e.g. post-purchase communication and customer service. Communication thus reflects the facilitating effect of frequent and personalized vendor-buyer interactions on trust maintenance.
Adaptation to increase trust is a relatively straightforward exercise. Other aspects are to maintain a sensible personality, not shifting too much to different styles during a session. Other means of facilitating trust are being investigated at the time of writing. Specifically, we are interested in how to apply methods that work in societies, such as reputation management, referrals, available sanctions and third party certification. Trust could be easily gain but would probably lose each time passes. That’s why in order to have your permanent customer; you have to gain their trust forever. It would be a bit too hard for the merchant to regain the trust he or she want just to have the transaction going to be okay again. Customers had already felt the terror on the non-trusted services offered by such merchant. There should be a more convincing power just to regain that trust he or she ever wanted. Mostly it ends up on finding another client since your clients lose a trust on you. You would also end up on blaming yourself or even on blaming on how such product should be sold to customers online. It is so hard to gain trust when your client is online. Web is so huge that there exist different kinds of tricks just to sell or even to buy. Many forms of transactions could be done just to fool your customers or the merchant. Security measures should be implemented in order to answer this kind of foolishness. Methods such as TRUSTe and Verisign are steps in that direction but we believe will ultimately fail because of their own lack of consumer trust. It may be, therefore, that governmental regulation of trust management is one aspect which would work, although we do not advocate this approach.

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giesi mae l. gorgonio


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PostSubject: assignment 2   Fri Feb 27, 2009 2:00 pm

“In the past five years, 1 in 4 Americans was a victim of identity theft making it America's fastest growing crime. Identity theft statistics indicate that this crime costs the government, businesses, and citizens of America billions of dollars each year.” – whitcanyon.com

“Arizona had the dubious distinction of being the very worst place in America for identity theft. The rampant fraud affected almost 300,000 residents last year. The financial damages totaled $147 million. Why did this happen? An investigation has been opened to answer that question. Called 'Identity Theft 911', this study wants to know why 25% of Arizona residents have fallen prey to identity theft in the past six years. Some possible reasons include lack of government action, the increasing market for methamphetamines, and illegal or fraudulent employment.” – (Weiss, 2008)

According to the Javelin Strategy and Research’s new report, identity fraud rates increased for the first time in the five years (2009 Identity Fraud Survey Report: Identity Fraud on the Rise but Consumer Costs Plummet as Protectionist increase, 2009)

These are few of the many reasons why many people still prefer shopping traditionally though the virtual world offer a much convenient way. Though the Internet has opened and skyrocketed the opportunities for business entrepreneur, it is not a guarantee that you will be successful in whatever you may want to venture online.

The information above is the concerns of online shoppers when making online purchases. According to an article citing TNS Research (2006), 87% of online shoppers are concerned about credit card fraud; 85% of online shoppers are concerned about identity theft; 83% of online shoppers are concerned about sharing personal information; and 77% of online shoppers are concerned about spyware.

Based on these facts, we can conclude that building trust in e commerce is essential. Trust is the key element of commerce in both traditional and innovative model. The latter needs much work and effort than its traditional counterpart because it solely relies on trust being created and maintained with the help of the digital devices and services.

These are the following information and ways I have research to convey trust on the Internet:

• Since many people are concern of entering information and confidential data across the Internet, digital certificate is the effect for ensuring e commerce security. Having a digital certificate in your web site makes online shoppers feel secure because it is a sign that you, the certificate owner is legitimate and is able to protect the sensitive data of your customers. You can only have a digital certificate after the certificate authority have thoroughly checked your company. Customers who see your post logo will trust you because they will know that your web site undergoes a thorough test and inspection process and that their personal data submitted will be encrypted.

• Many people are hesitant in doing shopping online because they do not know what the online merchant will do with their personal data because they may think that their information will be sold to email spammers and telemarketers. With this, e commerce companies can show that they take privacy seriously by displaying a seal that tells customers that the company practices a good privacy policy.

• An e commerce company must not only take care of security issues and assure other privacy issues but also prove that they deliver promises. A company must make sure that they are reliable by making sure that they provide an excellent service level.

• You should also provide a way to contact your business to know their concerns also.

• Putting testimonials from your customers is an effective way to gain your visitor’s trust. In this way, they will know what kind of product and service you have.

• You also need to let your visitors know how will you use their personal information and how are you going store it.

• A very popular and for good reasoning is the money back guarantee. It is a way to show that you do not have anything to hide and you are confident in your product or service.

• Providing a sample or trial of your product or service is also a wonderful way to gain visitor’s trust.

• It is also advantage if you have endorsements from another well known and respected organization(s) or person(s) that will help you prove your claims.

• According to John S. Rhodes article, the three primary factors about trust from a survey are: good content, simple design, and few grammatical errors.

• Well-written content is crucial in gaining trust. It is said that a trusted web site is driven by content other than design driven. Also the decorative graphics, animations and other “ornamentals” don’t seem to facilitate the development of trust.

• Grammatical errors have a tendency to cause a user to drive back and discourage them to bookmark. Well organizing and updating your web site frequently can improve trust to users especially if you provide them with the well-run materials. Many users easily trust those web sites that are easy to access and easy to search. Freshness of your content is also a great factor because fresh material is easier to trust than old materials.

• According to survey, people are inclined to trust web sites that are more usable.

• It is important that your web site is well designed and provide a user friendly environment that makes sure your visitors comfortable in the first time they visit your site. First impression is very important. You cannot convince your visitors face to face so it is important to have a good interface.

• In should be taken seriously that small things can quickly turn users off making their trust drop such as spelling errors.

• Even a minor grammatical error can deter a sale because a decrease in usability leads to decrease in trust. The risk that people may go elsewhere is high when there is a usability error.

• Make sure that your web content is audience appropriate and user driven. It is important to create the content first before the design. To ensure that there is no error, repeatedly test the content and design with users.

• Having a simple web site is important. It is advisable to make sure that your web site is as simple as possible using minimum colors and graphics. Organize the content effectively and be consistent from page to page.

• Aside from grammatical errors, beware of factual errors. Do not say something that is not true and don’t fabricate information.

• Give credit where credit is due. Provide links to sources and references.

• Updating frequently is important. Informing users of the last update is usually done at the bottom of the page in the footer area.

• Minimize the use of graphics. When using graphics be sure that they are appealing. Graphics should generally provide extremely useful information or they should present an idea not easily expressed with words.

• Be sure that there are no dead links on your site.

• Be sure that user email (especially user feedback) is responded to as fast as possible. An increase in response time is inversely proportional to trust. Also, be sure to utilize the power of your .sig file.

If you are serious about selling on the world wide web and being successful, your number one priority must be gaining your visitor’s trust. Without trust you won’t sale much and that’s really being optimistic. How do visitors know that they can trust a web site enough to buy? In this article I’ll show how to gain the trust of your visitors.

The first impression can be everything. Studies have shown that visitors can determine almost immediately whether they can trust you or not. Making it essential that you have good, clean and professional looking web design. The web design should be easy to the eye and easy to navigate. It should also load fast and require nothing to download in order for it to be viewed, such as flash and Java.

Provide your visitors a way for them to contact your business. Many visitors will look for this information, some don’t even realize they do. If you don’t provide it you are sure to lose sales. They need to know this information, just in case they need help or want to return the product or want to make a comment. You need to provide a mailing address, phone number and email address/contact form.

Secure Sockets Layer certificate is also important part of gaining your visitor’s trust. Secure Socket Layer is a protocol that sends encrypted data over the Internet. Secure Sockets Layer certificate shows that all information being transmitted on your web site will be passed on securely and is protected. Some people will not even think about buying from a web site that don’t at least offer this as an option.

Testimonials can be a wonderful way to gain your visitor’s trust in your product or service. Testimonials show that people that have bought from you are pleased with your product or service. Also, never make up testimonials, this can hurt you more then it helps because it’s not too hard for you to be caught in the act. This may lead people to believe that all your testimonials are fake and that you can’t be trusted.

Internet surfers are ever more looking at the privacy statement on web sites because of the fear of personal information getting into the wrong hands. You need to let your visitors know exactly how you will be using their information you collect and how you’ll be storing it. Visitors need to know if their information will be sold or shared with any third party and if you sale or shared the information with any third party, what information will you give out?

Also what security measures will you take to protect the information you have collected and how can they change or delete any of their information? It’s also a good idea to get your privacy statement certificate by an organization that’s well known and trusted. Most of these organizations make sure your privacy statement is fair to the internet surfers.

Money back guarantees are becoming very popular and for good reason, they show that you are confident in your product or service and that you have nothing to hide. It removes all risk to your customers and makes them much more likely to buy from you. Further more, remember to honor all refund requests in a timely manner without fighting with them. Just suck it up and give them the refund.

Provide a sample or trial of your product or service. This will allow your potential customers to test out the product or service before making any commitment. Some potential customers may have never got the product or service from you before because of the fear that it wasn’t what they really wanted and needed. Just like offering the money back guarantees, this too will show that you are confident in your product or service and that you have nothing to hide.

Today, according to study getting endorsements from another well known and respected organization(s) or person(s) will help prove your claims. The integrity and expertise of the person or organization endorsing your service or product also plays a role. Someone that’s consider an expert about one of your service’s or product’s subject would be better then someone that don’t know much or anything about it.

Though business owners are giving their best in protecting their customers, it should always be remembered that hackers and other people having bad intentions are also doing their best in using the power of technology in achieving what they want. Therefore, it is also important that every individual must do their part in protecting their identity. The following are just some suggestions to protect your self against identity thieves: every individual must be aware the business they are dealing with; ensure you are shopping at a secure Web site; beware of phishing e-mails that appear to be from trusted businesses; review privacy and security policies of the companies you do business with; do not use personal information for passwords; be proactive in protecting your security by keeping antivirus and firewall software updated; be aware that international security and privacy standards may be different; and check your credit report regularly.

In many cases, identity theft victims haven't done anything wrong, except place their trust in people who abuse or neglect it. Do your part to protect your identity by enrolling in a credit monitoring service. Use online banking to keep real-time tabs on purchases made with your accounts. If you notice anything odd, contact your credit card company immediately. Many of them have measures in place to keep identity theft damage to a minimum.

As the technology is evolving, it should always be remembered that thieves are also coping with this changes just like what is said by Judy Lin, the executive vice president and general manager of VeriSign, "With the increase in both the frequency and sophistication of malicious online activities such as phishing and identity theft, a fresh approach is needed to protect consumers as they conduct business online.”

[1] http://www.articlesbase.com/finance-articles/the-worst-identity-theft-scams-of-the-year-435665.html
[2] http://www.whitecanyon.com/identity-theft-statistics.php
[3] http://www.spamlaws.com/credit-fraud-stats.html *
[4] http://www.samport.com/news/press-release-online-fraud-hits-christmas-shopping *
[5] http://www.en8848.com.cn/Article/Ecommerce/Ecommerce/11747.html

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Anthony E. Catamora


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PostSubject: Assignment 2   Tue Mar 10, 2009 1:50 am

I think trust is one of the most important things to gain from those people who are closest to you and even much more to the people whom you do not know well. Therefore, gaining the trust of others is something that we must to work on in all the endeavors we take into. That is why trust is viewed as an important aspect of successful electronic commerce. Just only concerning on my own perspective about trust for a successful electronic commerce, trust is one of the great aspects for a successful electronic commerce and it became a major thing that electronic commerce has been greatly evolved over the past years since technology has begun to involve in the life of many people in dealing with their daily activities.

The concepts in electronic commerce must have its major concern with the trust to be gained by to other people because this matter of commerce we to convince the customers and other potential people who will buy the product or lend services that offered. The term commerce itself signifies communication between person to person or organization to organization that deal with exchanging or bartering something such as products or services that are beneficiary to both parties. In order for this transaction to be possible and successful, there must be a trust gained by both parties. I must think that trust is very important in electronic commerce and this signifies only a successful thing for electronic commerce that is heading in every various industries. These industries are focusing with their goal of success for the business concept or model they have establish for the company. Trust can also be gained through different factors that the potential customers or users have to observe in effective electronic commerce because this is the best way to ensure the efficiency of the electronic commerce.

According to e-Journal of muse.jhu.edu (2003) that trust in electronic commerce is an essential component of all successful buyer-seller relationships, there is a renewed focus on trust when these relationships are conducted through electronic media. They also stated a broad definition of trust such that trust is the willingness of a buyer to be vulnerable to a seller's non-desirable actions while expecting the seller to perform actions that are beneficial to the buyer without the buyer having to monitor these actions. Buyers look for signs from sellers that increase their trust, and sellers look at ways they can help build buyers' trust. Another point of these views is that trust must be recognized unintentionally by the buyers without emphasizing to them what the product or service intends for them. Being a seller, he or she should aware of the  importance of building and establishing trust to its potential and valued buyers. The seller should prepare to study and plan how to create an effective model to take the attention of the buyers that may be able to gain effectively the trust of the buyers by giving them different factors of assurance. E-journal also added that traditional trust-building mechanisms include physical presence, past actions, and legal and regulatory frameworks. The emergence of online businesses has brought about new challenges for building trust, in both B2B and B2C business environments. The evolution of new e-business models and the advances in information technology have raised more challenges than solutions for establishing and maintaining trust in the electronic marketplace. I think this is true that electronic commerce has brought about a new challenge in gaining the trust of the consumers of buyers in a different environment and ways of transactions. There such B2B or Business to Business transaction or model and B2C or Business to Consumer transaction or model which are most used business model of different industries in the field of electronic commerce. This is somehow that trust must be very important for party, the producer or seller and consumer or buyer, in aiming and heeding to successful to a successful electronic commerce which became a daily challenge of business in electronic commerce. Again, trust is certainly may seen through different business models that are being carefully studied and analyzed through different past researches and studies in different geographical areas. Several technique of implementations of security and product or service quality among other business parties are being centralized and conceptualized thoroughly as the trust of the buyers are regarded to be the most important thing in the successful business especially in electronic commerce. According to philosophe.com (2009) that trust plays an important part in any transaction, but it may not be a conscious part. Add more this that trust is not a characteristic that inheres in an ecommerce site; trust is a judgment made by the user, based on general experience learned from being a consumer and from the perception of the particular merchant. As I added to this thought, that is true that trust is an understanding of good perception about the certain product or merchant regarding to their qualities and cost or price. This is very applicable when we are being introduced to some online merchants that are trusted by other online buyers. Usually these buyers most often refer those merchants to other potential consumers or buyers like us who always seek for trusted online sellers. These things happen vice versa either other consumers or buyers to other extended buyers and others may be potential consumers. There must be some cues to understand in determining the worth of trust for electronic commerce sites such that taking consideration to its sense of professionalism, architecture of informations, navigation of the site, accessibility of the site, responsiveness of the site to frequent asked questions coming from the buyers, popularity of the site to other people regarding with their products and services, familiarity with the company and the realistic of the prices given in the site.

As have being emphasized that security measures are one of the most important factors in providing and building a trust to its valued and potential customer or buyer, trust can be achieved through different perceivable security issues and measures in electronic commerce. According to securityfocus.com (2004) that the tremendous increase in online transactions has been accompanied by an equal rise in the number and type of attacks against the security of online payment systems. Some of these attacks have utilized vulnerabilities that have been published in reusable third-party components utilized by websites, such as shopping cart software. Other attacks have used vulnerabilities that are common in any web application, such as SQL injection or cross-site scripting. Successful exploitation of these vulnerabilities can lead to a wide range of results. Information and path disclosure vulnerabilities will typically act as initial stages leading to further exploitation. SQL injection or price manipulation attacks could cripple the website, compromise confidentiality, and in worst cases cause the e-commerce business to shut down completely. As pointing these views regarding security measures in electronic commerce in such as online systems considering its used web applications, the increase of electronic commerce nowadays has posed great threats to every security of electronic sellers and users. This is really a daily challenge to everyone in the industry of electronic commerce where every concern of sellers and users are being taken attention regarding how it will be going to deal with these threats because the trust involved here in the electronic commerce is at risk. I must say that security is one of the greatest factors in successful electronic commerce and that must be implemented strictly in all online transactions especially in the system itself throughout the whole electronic system. There are some particular vulnerabilities have been observed in the security in electronic commerce as follows; background, SQL injection, price manipulation, buffer overflows, cross-site scripting, remote command execution, and weak authentication and authorization. In terms of background aspect in electronic commerce regarding to its nature of work or transaction, vulnerabilities are being observed and experiences most often times and yet threats take this as advantage to compromise the system of many sites. Many online businesses are suffering from this without implementing proper security measures. Security should be imposed within the deep of the systems such as giving attention to how it will going to have programming techniques as security assurance is concerned. Another one is the SQL injection, as it referred to the insertion of SQL meta-characters in user input, such that the attacker's queries are executed by the back-end database. This means the other vulnerabilities are also seen by how the database of the system is being handled and manage its front and back end. That is why there are a lot of incidents of hacking the system of some site through starting invading the internal information of the system which is its database. The other one that caused some vulnerability is the price manipulation where the environment of the online transaction such as payment gateways and online shopping carts regarding their price management is being manipulated through invincible attacks. Upon hearing this instance of manipulation, sellers and buyers will find some insecurity regarding their protected sales and products. In that sense, the trust of both party such as the sellers and buyers in electronic commerce would find in an instant uncertainty. The next one vulnerability they called buffer overflows. This buffer overflows indicates vulnerability in electronic commerce where its system capable of being attacked through sending massive values to the system that is beyond to its limit. This will cause error to the system that provides chances to the attacker to manipulate the information transmitted along the system like address. The next one is cross-site scripting. This vulnerability will give in-assurance to buyers / consumers in online transactions because of its used security in web application online such that the users’ direction may be manipulated through scripting. Remote command execution and weak authentication and authorization are another type of vulnerability in electronic commerce that submits its users or buyers to something of manipulation concerning to the transactions on online. In the part of sellers or consumers, their sales and viability of valued customer are at stake of losing in an immediate time of retrieval. For customers or buyers’ sake, it would be better for them to think twice or more in rendering their trust in online transactions so as to in electronic commerce. As countermeasures, the electronic commerce itself must provide a greater security measures on its online transactions such that the used wed application must imposed early staged techniques of security measures that may prevent the early errors or threats that may encounter during the online transactions. At this stage, electronic commerce may invoke an early security measures that provide the necessary trust to its valued consumers or buyers online. Security in electronic commerce certainly is important for online transactions or any telecommunication transactions because security holds important trust that to be attained by its potential and valued buyers or consumers.  Trust is central in e-commerce relationships because of the presence of risks, uncertainties, and interdependencies (Mayer, Davis & Schoorman, 1995; Mishra, 1996). It is a key element of social capital (Mayer et al., 1995), and it has been related to desirable outcomes such as supplier performance (Zaheer, McEvily & Perrone, 1998), satisfaction (Geyskens, Steenkamp & Kumar, 1998), competitive advantages (Barney & Hansen, 1994), and other favorable economic outcomes. The benefits of trust in e-commerce relationships seem wide ranging; including lowering transaction costs (Gulati, 1995), promoting desirable behaviors, reducing the extent of formal contracts and facilitating dispute resolutions (Ring & Van de Ven, 1994). Trust plays a significant role in e-commerce because of anonymity, lack of control, lack of physical proximity, potential opportunism and inefficiencies in web technology (Doyle & Melanson, 2001; Hoffman et al., 1999; Jarvenpaa et al., 2000; Naranyandas, Caravella & Deighton, 2002), (goliath.ecnext.com, 2005). These ideas about trust and security in electronic commerce are very persuasive in dealing with all aspects in successful electronic commerce and how they became an important part in the online and telecommunication business transaction. Reliable trust is very effective for trusted online businesses such as dealing with money transfer and product purchasing conducted online or other telecommunication services to achieve favorable economic outcome. Again, trust is playing as an effective tool to achieve a successful electronic commerce. And to effectively gain the trust of its buyers, proper implementation of security within the entire system is a must and keeping up with the new updates in security control.

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PostSubject: Assignment 2   Tue Mar 17, 2009 2:20 am

The Internet has become the most relevant platform for e-commerce. As in any business the main goal of doing e-business is to make profit under the assumption that every involved party respects the rules that are defined by the legal framework. This assumption is clearly too idealistic since e-commerce suffers from the same possible threats, such as theft or fraud, as non-electronic business. The new business models, however, can only be successful if their technical design and implementation are done in a secure way to prevent such threats.

Early e-commerce systems typically were electronic reimplementation of simple traditional business models with a small number of involved roles. These systems used customized security solutions and mainly considered security issues between two communication partners. Current e-commerce business models are far more complex and evolving because they are based on the business cooperation among several partners. The simple customer-vendor model has been augmented by a large number of intermediaries and suppliers which increases complexity due to the higher number of roles and interactions. Unfortunately, 2-party security cannot easily be generalized to n interacting parties, since more and new security threats are possible, for example, by collusions among parties. Additionally, upcoming domains such as e-commerce (trading of intangible goods) yield new security problems.

Secure and trustworthy commercial relationships require a better understanding of the risks and how they can be addressed technically. To thwart successful attacks potential security holes of the business models must be analyzed carefully in all respects. Such analysis provides the basis for determining the appropriate security methods. At the moment security analysis of business models is done ad hoc and depends heavily on intuition and experience. A systematic and general approach to discover all possible problems and scenarios has not been defined so far.

Every possible business model can be modeled with three business roles: customers, providers, and intermediaries. A customer requests services or products from providers or intermediaries, expects the delivery of the requested product or service, and possibly has to pay for it. A provider generates and offers products or services to customers and intermediaries, delivers them according to the negotiated business terms, and may require payment for them. An intermediary offers services to customers, providers, and intermediaries and possibly offers products to customers or other intermediaries. A concrete business model can involve any number of any of these roles but at least must consist of a customer and a provider. The services and products an intermediary offers can be manifold. It can provide search and retrieval services, advertise products or services, group, or aggregate information products, or provide negotiation or payment services. The underlying idea is that customers, providers, or intermediaries can delegate certain functionalities to specialized intermediaries so that they do not have to address certain issues themselves.

A typical business model consists of a combination (of a subset) of the following phases:
Advertising: A party publishes descriptions of the available products to enable other parties to discover products of their interest and browse through available offers. Offers may be legally binding or not. Typical implementations include publishing on web servers (passive), mail/push distribution (active), or active searching and matching (robots, mobile agents).
Negotiation: Once a product of interest is found, negotiating the business terms and possibly the properties of the product can start. Independently of the concrete negotiation process this phase must end with an agreement between the involved parties to continue with the succeeding phases. If no agreement can be reached at all the business process aborts. However, negotiation and advertising can trigger each other mutually: If a party disagrees with an offer it can request new offers or the party issuing the original offer can send new offers.
Ordering: After an agreement on the product and the business terms has been reached, a party may order the product. If the agreement is legally binding, we call it a contract. Payment: If a product requires payment, then monetary values must be exchanged. We consider payment from a high-level point of view due to the arbitrary ways it can be done: It may involve credit card interactions, a bonus point system, micro-payments, or real money transfers, and heavily depends on the applied payment model such as rates, pay-per-use, or flat fees. Since these models involve very different concerns we address the conceptual superset and assume that the applied payment system secures payment transaction in a feasible way.
Delivery: In this phase the involved product is delivered to the requesting parties. Security in this phase heavily depends on whether products are tangible or intangible. Security for tangible goods is provided by non-electronic means whereas for intangible goods additional security issues apply. For example, intangible goods such as programs or documents may be duplicated and sold without the consent of the copyright holder or the product could be tampered with. These scenarios require special consideration. The security problems of intangible goods and an approach to address them. The possible business models are derived from the above phases by mapping them onto the roles that interact in a certain phase and the sequence in which the phases occur.

Before the design of a secure system the business model has to be analyzed to identify what has to be protected against which potential attacker and which parts need not be secured because the parties trust each other. The result is the trust model which is the basis for any further steps. To enable an analysis, we have to consider the capabilities, skills, and time the attacker is assumed to have. Then critical points have to be determined, the values for all involved parties and the possibilities for dishonest parties to achieve advantages illegally must be identified. Other problems with dishonest parties to be regarded concern the infliction of losses to other parties, example, denial of service. In such cases, the advantages are indirect: causing problems for a competitor can have positive influence on the attacker’s own business. Another aspect to be considered in a trust model is potential collusions of involved parties. Even if security concepts resist attacks that were performed by individual attackers they can become dramatically insecure if attackers exploit their common power. In reality, the strength and restrictiveness of the trust model to be chosen is not only driven by security aspects. Because security can often be expensive, the expenditure for security has to be compared with expected losses.

Security methods can be classified into those providing prevention of attacks (example, encryption of information) and those for detection of attacks (example, verification of signature forgery). Furthermore, consequences for attackers have to be defined clearly. This must be accomplished by laws and regulations within a legal framework since technical security is not sufficient for a secure business environment. Additionally, an arbitrator is needed who has the authority to impose these consequences based on the evaluation of some evidence provided by the detection mechanisms. A party which is in conflict with party can convince an arbitrator of’s fault only if it can present evidence which can be only created by party. Presenting information that can also be created by other parties, example, A, is insufficient for this purpose. Therefore, the technical design must include special mechanisms whenever a business interaction requires convincing means to prevent malicious parties from infringing the business or legal rules. Additionally, trusted third parties such as certification authorities or time stamping authorities, are frequently necessary in security concepts.

Actions of malicious parties are categorized under the summarizing terms privacy infringement and fraud. Privacy infringement: This category denotes actions by which malicious parties intend to find out information about other parties. Such attacks can hardly be detected by the victims. Considering a business relation we have to distinguish if the privacy infringement is performed by a party which is involved in the business relation or which does not participate in the business relation. Inside a business relation the involved partners in general have to reveal information to each other to a certain degree. For example, a customer may have to provide name and address, the knowledge of a customer’s buying preferences can be exploited for identifiable customer profiles for data mining and direct marketing purposes. Studies have shown that users want to reveal as little personal information as possible because they fear loss of privacy and potential misuse.

Two approaches exist for avoiding misuse of personal data such as collecting, processing or passing it to other parties: regulation by legal framework and technologies which constrain or fully avoid unauthorized insight into personal data. Solely relying on a legal framework is an insufficient protection since this is equivalent to trusting that other parties will follow the rules. Furthermore, in an international context the legal framework is still very heterogeneous. Technologies that hide personal data from interacting business partners are not developed to an extent to be used in real trading scenarios. Technologies which provide anonymity exist and can be used to surf the Internet or to hide all identifiable information from the communication partner in emails, but cannot be used in business relations that are based on contracts.

Beside this intra-business protection also protection against parties not participating in the business relationship must be considered, example., a wiretapper who is interested in what a specific person buys or how often a vendor sells a specific product. This problem can be easily solved by encrypting messages. Several encryption methods and ways for exchanging cryptographic keys can be used here. Fraud: In this classification fraud covers different intentions of malicious parties that can either be inside or outside the business relationship. It comprises masquerading of parties, manipulation of messages, repudiation of binding agreements, and theft of goods. Secure systems must be able to detect such attacks immediately and they should provide the victim with enough evidence to identify the malicious party undoubtedly to convince an arbitrator.

In masquerading attacks, malicious parties claim to have some other party’s identity. Examples are sending messages with forged sender address, or using services and charging it to some other party’s account. The solution to this well-known problem is authentication, where we have to distinguish between data origin authentication and entity authentication. Data origin authentication provides the receiver of a message with the identity of the party which originated the message. However, this does not prevent an attack in which a malicious party copies an authenticated message and resends it later claiming the identity of the originator. This security hole can be fixed by applying entity authentication which guarantees both the identity of the communication partner and that he/she really sent the received message. Authentication methods can also be classified according to whether they provide the receiver with an evidence to convince a third party or not.

Manipulation of messages is another security problem in business relationships that has to be prevented. Example, an attacker who is not involved in the business relationship could increase the prices in offers on their way to a customer to dissuade him/her. The motivation to manipulate messages can be for profit or simply wanting to be detrimental to others. To prevent manipulation methods for verifying the integrity of exchanged messages are applied. Again we can distinguish two cases: Is it sufficient to detect manipulation at all or should the detection also provide an evidence to convince a third party of the integrity and validity of a document? In the second case this additionally means that the originator of a valid document cannot claim that the document was changed at a later time. This already touches the problem of repudiation of binding agreements. In business relations agreements are often binding. Example, a party should not be able to claim not having placed a certain order if it actually did, or it should not be possible that a party falsely claims having received an order from another party. In both cases, the ordering party would repudiate what the receiver claims. A conflict in which a party repudiates having agreed to some business details requires evidence that can be used to convince a third party or to identify the dishonest party. A solution to this problem are unforgeable digital signatures. A digital signature of a message is a number which depends on a secret key that is only known to the signer, and on the content of the message that is signed. The validity of the signature can be verified easily by everyone using the signer’s public key and without knowing the secret.

Whenever commercial goods are traded the possibility of theft must be considered. This problem is well-known in the tangible world and measures are taken to avoid it. In the 5 area of e-commerce dealing with intangible goods the situation is different and much more complicated. Digital goods can be copied easily at nearly no costs and without loss of quality. An original and its copies are identical and cannot be distinguished. Illegal copying and redistribution of intangible goods is hard to detect because in contrast to theft in the tangible world the original is still available to its rightful owner afterwards. Two approaches exist to cope with this piracy problem: preventive methods using tamper-resistant hardware and repressive methods based on fingerprinting the intangible goods.

The approach based on special tamper-resistant hardware modules has shown its limitations because of practical and effectiveness reasons. Although fingerprinting cannot make copying data technically impossible, it can prevent malicious parties from redistributing information goods. The goal of fingerprinting is to embed invisibly some information into each copy to make it unique. This information can be used later to identify the buyer of a copy. If an illegal copy is found the seller can trace the copy back to the buyer who has redistributed the copy. Fingerprints in information goods have to fulfill several requirements: They should not harm the functionality or representation of the data they are embedded in, buyers or a certain number of colluding buyers must not be able to locate the marks, marks must not be deleted by processing and compression, and must not be corrupted by embedding new fingerprints.

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PostSubject: Re: Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)   

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Assignment 2 (Due: before December 19, 2008, 13:00hrs)
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