Internet Shopping – Good or Bad?
Shopping on the Internet is increasing but would you do business this way?
The Internet?s popularity has dramatically escalated over the past few years and has become an integral part of daily life. It has wide spread uses ranging from, obtaining information, downloading files, business advertisement to Internet commerce, which plays a major part in Internet practice. Our social structure is pressuring society to connect to the Internet, with schools world wide becoming more Web based and universities now have lectures, which can be solely viewed over the Internet. Within the next few years the potential and capabilities of the Internet are endless. With that in mind the following assignment will examine a continuously flourishing component of the Internet, Internet shopping. Although Internet shopping is on the increase, it will never surpass conventional shopping, as the ?experience of shopping? is lost, it is open to fraud and the ?try before you buy? concept does not occur. From this information, it could be stated, ?The promise of Internet shopping is drowning in a flood of deceit, customer dissatisfaction, fraud and misappropriation. The Internet is best known for being a information superhighway, not a superhighway to the shopping mall.?
Shopping from the convenience and comfort of your own home may have its apparent advantages; no more standing in line, no more hassles. Currently people are using the Internet for shopping largely as it offers some benefits when compared with conventional shopping, for a narrow range of goods and services. Given that, there are still concerns about risks involved ? many issues from security of credit cards to privacy
Purchasing products from the Internet has major disadvantages when compared to conventional shopping. A significant problem is you cannot see the store you are buying from. On the Internet, it can be difficult to know whether the business you are dealing with is honest or not. When your credit card number is given to a marketing site in order to purchase goods, there is no certain guarantee that it will be used for the purpose it was intended for. Many unscrupulous internet web sites, use promises of miracle cures, and other hoaxes in order to exploit their users in an effort to gain credit card numbers and use them, for their own personal gain. However many web sites are creditable, but the security of their web page then may be violated. (By ?Hackers?)
When a user ?surfs? into an online store and submits an order form with a credit card number, the information is then transmitted from their computers modem via local telephone lines to their Internet Service Provider (ISP) and then over the Internet. The order may go to an intermediary or directly to the merchant’s server. Companies vary as to when they process their credit card details. Some do immediately, while others wait until the product has been shipped out to the customer. Anywhere along that path in which the information travelled, the security of their credit card number may have been compromised. Numerous Internet hackers ?surf? the Internet constantly looking for low security web pages in which to prey on.
?An intruder invaded more than 485,000 credit cards and secretly stored the massive database on a U.S. government agency’s Web site. While the credit card companies notified financial institutions, the customers were never informed. Many compromised accounts remain open to this day? (Perfectly Private Inc, Shopping Privacy Concerns) This is the main reason why many internet users don?t shop online, as their credit card details could me misused, which results in the customer having to pay for their deceitful act. ?Two 18-year-old boys in Wales were arrested after allegedly stealing and distributing 26,000 credit card files from 5 different sites. Estimated losses: $3 million.? (Perfectly Private Inc, Shopping Privacy Concerns
Not only can credit card details be stolen, but also many merchant sites sell and store massive databases of information about each customer they have, compromising the customers? privacy and confidentiality. ?The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) scrutiny of 229 Australian websites uncovered credit card fraud, privacy breaches and poor trading safeguards by e-commerce retailers.? (Perfectly Private Inc, Shopping Privacy Concerns
Many web sites try to tailor their market towards each individual customer.