IS CYBER CRIME BECOMING A THREAT TO E-COMMERCE
In today’s world the internet has become a source for everything from online shopping to online banking. Physical markets are becoming less active compared to before when technology started evolving in the mid 1990’s. Though some may people may see the internet positively as a source of income without knowing the risks being taken whilst using the internet
Cybercrime is one of the biggest problems the world is facing right now and mostly for the industry of e-commerce. Millions of pounds, personal data are being stolen annually from the internet. Cybercrime has become a hurdle in the road of success of online business. So, I have written this report to outline the various problems concerning cybercrime and how to address this issue.
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No Holiday, no time limits, no distance bound, in today’s world of commerce; it has shifted from its old physical markets to electronic & mobile commerce, where you can shop at your convenience, do transactions anytime and anywhere with just a click away. E-commerce is providing the easy & most convenient way for a financial transactions and shopping. Most banks in the United Kingdom (UK) have setup their desktop and mobile software to ease the online transaction. Global online shopping giants Amazon, E-Bay and the Chinese Alibaba have made their move to introduce the modernization into the industry.
When most transactions are going on electronically, they are also becoming the source of crime. Lots of information shared, money transferred are on the target of the cyber criminals. All organisations are increasing their technical base, more and more people are depending upon the internet for transactions without analysing the risk associated with the technology. Cyber criminals manipulate financial and other personal data, can move electronic ownership, interrupt communications with employees or business partners, steal intellectual property, damage an organisation’s reputation, or bring e-commerce (or an entire business) to shut down.
2.0 Internet Revolution
According to (Sarwar, 2013) The smartphone revolution in telecom industry has been boosting up, increasing year by year and so many opportunities are coming through with this small device that we use in our everyday lives. Today, with over 87.9% of the population of the United Kingdom (UK) [source:www.ons.gov.uk]
The Office for National Statistics predicts that this number is likely to increase. A rapidly expanding industry, with smartphones in hand are looking to the future and breaking the chain of traditional physical shopping in the coming decades.
Below are the top 10 countries by number of internet users.
Name of Country
Number of Internet Users
Source: Internet World Stats *As of March 2015. Internet Use
3.0 Cyber-Crime and Law
Cyber-crime is an unlawful act are carried out by criminals through the internet, and can vary from forgery to hacking and so on. Criminal activities theft, fraud, forgery, defamation and mischief through the internet or electronic media are also considered the Cyber Crimes under Information Technology Act, 2000 (Amended 2008). (Holton, 2010) says, Unsecured networks, IT infrastructure, lack of awareness in consumers and organisations make the cyber-crime complex.
3.1 Cyber crime does happen all around the world, these criminals use the advantage of the internet to attack individuals, organisations or even the government. Here are some of the Laws that are taken seriously by authorities;
• Tampering with computer source documents
• Loss/Damage to computer resources
• Obscene publication/transmission in the electronic form
• Failure Certifying Authority
• Failure to assist in decrypting the information intercepted by Govt. Agency
• Un-Authorised access to protected computer system
• Obtaining license or digital signature by misrepresentation
• Publishing False Information
• Digital Fraud
• Breach of Privacy
• False Electronic Evidence
• Destruction of electronic evidence
• Counterfeiting Property Mark
3.1 In cyber-crime computer is used as weapon (Cyber Terrorism, Credit/ Debit Card Frauds, EFT Frauds) and also computer is on target (Hacking, Virus/Worm attacks, damaging/spoofing operating system etc.) of criminals
Cyber law describes the area of law that deals with cyberworld and its users. It is blend of numerous legitimate fields, licensed innovation, protection, opportunity of articulation and ward. Cyber security is to provide a safeguard to online fraud, humiliation; unsocial content on internet & illegal human activity over the internet.
3.2 The smartphone and tablet revolution have increased the e-commerce transactions but with that risk of cyber-crime has also been increasing. Cyber crime has significantly increased in the last five years has alarmed to make provision to bind the crimes. Strong laws, awareness in people and use of technology are necessary to prevent activities that are responsible for use in a negative perspective.
4.0 Cyber Crime & e-commerce:
With the new mode of business activities, e.g. banking, retail etc. this all depends upon electronic media, the internet is now like heaven for the cyber-criminals. Companies that shifting towards the internet are excited about their growth and on the other hand worry about security.
(Kuechler, 2005) Argues that the E-commerce industry is different from the rest of the industries in terms of operations so it has unique challenges and the risks as the physical absence increases the chances of frauds and crimes. There are many more reasons across the globe for uncontrolled e-commerce cyber frauds.
The cost of cyber-crime will continue to increase as more businesses are moving online and as consumers and organisations are gathering on the cyber space. Risk of theft of intellectual property increases resulting in replicate products with us of technology theft causing huge losses to companies.
Governments should take more serious precautions to combat the challenges of cyber-crime otherwise technology will do damage to businesses. Globally cyber-crime has been claiming the loss of 300 Billion Pounds annually. (Net losses: Estimating the Global Cost of Cyber-crime, economic impact of cybercrime II, 2014)
- First Time Buyers: New customers are joining the voyage continuously also the new retailers are coming. Both have less knowledge and awareness so they are always easy prey for the cyber criminals.
- Online Debit/Credit Card installment choices: All over the world this has become a significant issue as less and less exchanges are turning out to be carefully physical just in this way.
5.0 How to deal with these Cyber-crimes
Cyber-crimes can be controlled by mutual cooperation amongst organisations and the net users. Organisations and Governments should provide the safety and technical support to the users to prevent these crimes. The Internet users also have to some precautions not to fall victim to these frauds. The internet should unite in search of a better and secure Tech world, therefore to get rid of these cybercrime practitioners it will need mutual cooperation,
5.1 (Amir, 2019) Expresses, that below are the few ways we could possibly overcome this horror;
- Different Passwords for Different Sites: This method would help users protect most if not all personal information, possibly if the cybercriminal cracks one website you may be safe on the other.
- Use Secured Sites: Using secure sites will make it harder for the criminals to get through the site to steal information so therefore this is a very good way to protect yourself from these acts of crime.
- Don’t open suspicious emails: Criminals do use this method as a way to trap their victim, promising them a lottery win or a fixed gambling games win just so they could get hand of the information and then vanish with stolen financial information.
- Frequently Change Passwords: It is very unsafe to use the same password on a platform for a long time, therefore, it would be safer to frequently change passwords
- Shop through trusted Sites: Trusted sites would be harder to be attacked by these criminals as so far they are well known and with that being said they may be well secured that’s why most are using it
After my research about this topic, my findings do justify that cybercrime is seriously damaging the evolution of the E-commerce industry, the users are feeling threatened by these acts of crime, as most of them of a possibility of cybercrime leading to their hard-earned money being stolen by the criminals.
Not only is it affecting the users, but also the e-commerce businesses, as fear is all over the customers so this will lead to a downfall of users in to the industry, in this way the industry is losing out of a large sum of money. So, I do think there’s a need for the governments and private cybersecurity organisations intervention in order to secure the internet and make it safe for everyone to use.
Not to be one sided, I also do think there are some improvements to cyber security being made. The internet is not as unsecure as before, although they may still be some areas that need improvement. And I do believe the organisations concerned can overcome these problems soon.
- Friedman & P. W. Singer (2013) “Cybersecurity and Cyberwar: What Everyone Needs to Know”
- P. Holton (2010) “Cyber Crime and Security: A New Model of Law Enforcement Investigation”
- P. Feldman (2002) “The Internet revolution and the geography of innovation”
- P. Bailey & W. McKnight (1997) “Internet Economics”
- H. Chander (2012) “CYBER LAWS AND IT PROTECTION”
- L. Qasimi & Z. Karake-Shalhoub (2010) “Cyber Law and Cyber Security in Developing and Emerging Economies”
- U. Amir (2019) “10 Ways to Keep Yourself Secure Online Against Cyber Attacks”
- D. Kuechler (2005) “The Evolution of E-commerce: From a Stakeholder’s Perspective”
- G. Loukas (2015) “Cyber Physical Threats: A Growing Invisible Threat”
- D. Brown (1998) “Digital Fortress”
- R. Howard (2010) “Cyber Security Essentials”
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