RealNews

New Efforts to Fight Identity Theft

CONSUMERS are losing trust in the Internet, and online companies are taking note. The Information Technology Association of America, a trade group, said last week that it would help create the Coalition on Online Identity Theft, composed of Internet retailers and security companies allied against what has become a significant problem both online and off. Word of the group’s formation came eight weeks after the announcement of another industry association, the Merchant Risk Council, which was formed to combat online credit card fraud. Both groups arise amid a growing sense of uneasiness among online consumers, perhaps best captured in a report in late July from the technology consultant Forrester Research, which concluded that consumers had become steadily less confident in online security. In a survey of about 39,000 Internet users, Forrester found that nearly a third of online shoppers polled were pessimistic about the security of Internet technology – the highest mark that pessimism gauge has reached since Forrester started tracking the statistic in 1998. “As more stories about online fraud continue to come up, this trend will become more pronounced,” said Christopher M. Kelley, a Forrester analyst. “Will it stop e-commerce dead in its tracks? No. But it could affect its potential.” Full Story

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