Companies know from numerous polls and surveys that privacy and security are important reasons consumers are reluctant to shop online. Their challenge has been to develop technology to allow the secure exchange of sensitive information in a manner that will gain your confidence and trust in online transactions.
Security measures used by most online companies involve some form of data encryption. Using this technology, information is encrypted or converted into a code that can only be unscrambled and read by an authorized person with the appropriate electronic key. Encryption increases the level of security for transmitting data online so you can more securely send financial information, such as credit card and bank account numbers.
Secure payment systems currently used by online businesses include:
Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) – developed by Netscape for transmitting private documents, works by using a private key to encrypt data. Both Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer support SSL, and many Web sites use it to obtain confidential consumer information, such as credit card numbers. Web pages that require an SSL connection start with https: instead of http:.
Secure Electronic Transaction (SET) – developed by MasterCard and Visa, assures secure credit and charge card payment using highly encrypted communication between card issuers, merchants and card members. SET provides an enhanced level of security, confidentiality and transaction integrity.
Secure Hypertext Transfer Protocol (S-HTTP) – offers a method for transmitting individual messages securely, such as e-mail.