The flights of AirAsia cover countries such as Malaysia, Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia, Vietnam, China, Philipines and Macau. In November 2003, AirAsia began its regional flights to Phuket, in Thailand, followed by flights to Bangkok, and later Hat Yai from KL International Airport. Bandung, Surabaya, and Jakarta are the three destination of AirAsia flights to Indonesia. It began in April 2004. Subsequently the airline also introduced flights to Bali, Medan and Padang.
Malaysia Airlines had its humble beginning in the golden age of travel. The airline holds a lengthy record of service and best practices excellence, having received more than 100 awards in the last 10 years. The most notable ones include being the first airline with the “World’s Best Cabin Crew” by Skytrax UK consecutively from 2001 until 2004, “5-star Airline” in 2005 and 2006, as well as No.1 for “Economy Class Onboard Excellence 2006” – also by Skytrax UK.
The first function of the website is designed is to make it a transactional website.
Transactional websites give customers the power to do transactions through the financial institution’s website by starting online transactions or enabling them to buy the air tickets. The services given by websites expose the company to a bigger risk because the transactional websites normally allow the electronic exchange of private customer infomation and funding transfer to be done.
The second function is to make a good first impression. A website is many times the first place people will come in contact with your business. You want this first visit to make a good impression. Also, back in the “brick and mortar ” world, when you first meet someone, if you have a website to refer them to, this will add to the first impression you make there as well. Many times prospects will check your card to see if you have a website. If you hand them a card and they see one listed there, this will help with that first impression of your company.
The third function is to build credibility for your business. Your website visitors are forming an impression of your business from your website. If they see a professional site, they will be thinking “this is a professional business!” Everyone wants to know if they are dealing with a reputable business, so provide information about your business partnerships on your website as well, such as displaying your BBB membership symbol on your site.
Final function is to make money. Providing an easy way to order needed parts or services is a given. But doing e-commerce can be a whole other ballgame. However, even if you aren’t taking orders online, if your website is doing all of the above, it is making you money.
The audiences for the websites are potential travelers of the airlines. These are also passengers who are computing literate as well.
Website services has become a big part of the environment of business with the development of information technology, the ever changing consumer lifestyle and preferences, and liberalization of the financial sector have served to foster stiff competition among financial institutions (Cronin, 2006).
What do audiences learn from the website?
Customers can save a lot of time because of the convenience provide especially the easy maintenance tools for management of the customer’s money. The main benefit for customers includes:
Reduced costs in accessing and usage of the website services.
Save time – transactions can be made 24 hours a day, no need to have physical interaction with the bank. Personal accounts can be used any time. No queues needed and the transaction is even faster compared to traditional way.
Quick and non stop access to information. Corporations will have more convenient access to information as, they can check on multiple accounts at the touch of a button.
Better cash management. The facilities increase the speed up cash cycle and also efficiency of business processes.
Many financial institutions maintain sites on the internet. Parts of the websites are strict while others offer normal financial transactions like transfer of funds.
Normally each website will have weblinks. A Weblink is defined as a word on a webpage which has coding that transports the viewer to another part of the website by just clicking the mouse. The usage of weblinks might be risky even it is convenient. The usual primary risk is that viewers might be confused about who is responsible for the product and services available through the website. However, there are lots of risk management techniques to reduce the risk. Such techniques are for the institutions which create their own websites and also those that utilize the third party service for such functions. Agencies provide guidance in the weblinking that includes the risk and risk management techniques in it.
The main reason is security. Security issues are consider a big issue for customers inside and outside of this industry. Websites naturally increase the risk of security because it is exposed to the risky environment and airlines company needs to monitor such a potential threat to them.
Security breaches normally is divided into 3 main categories which are:
Flaws in the system design
These are all serious and legal threats which will damage the reputation of the airlines. A lot of airlines are checked up to a lot of weaknesses daily but so far no major cases has happened before. Designers of the airlines create more alarms so that they can check the failed attempts in breaking their system by hackers.
The sensitive systems of computers which are used to store private and confidential information are the most secured of course. The theory is simple, where the higher the potential loss of the airlines, the more risky it is. However, airlines might have appropriate perimeter security, there is sometimes not enough segregation between internal systems and poor internal security. Someone may breach the lower secured system and trying to go into the higher value system through the airline’s internal network.
It won’t be difficult to emphasis over the security threats in their services. Such errors can be removed by the manual processing. This reduces risks to the integrity of transaction data, even though the risk of customers are not input correctly. As the airlines continues to prosper, there might be big security gains focusing attention on security threats.
In order to challenge the uprising threats in the correct manner, the designers had made the following steps:
a strategic approach to information security, creating best practice security controls into systems and networks as they are built
a proactive approach to information security, relating active testing of system security controls, fast paced response to new risk and weaknesses and regular review of market place developments
active use of system based security management and monitoring tools
powerful business information security controls
In my opinion, the website will be successful with its intended audience. The difference between the traditional channels which offer services is that websites utilizes the internet to provide the similar service to customers. There is no additional cost incurred in the service provided. This is why customers are attracted by this sort of marketing strategy and in another point of view, the customer can save a lot of trouble having to do their transactions personally.
The personal information of customers is stored in the database which is special software which stores such information in a high speed. The usage of the web server is to communicate among customers and also giving information through the internet. When the customer has an account inquiry, the web application program is required. C, Visual Basic, VBScript, and Java are few of the languages which are used to create the web application programs to work on the customer requests, communicate with the database, and generate dynamic responses. The web server will send the response HTML files to the customer after that. Both the airlines also use state-of-the-art imaging systems, enabling customers to see images of receipts and itinerary over the Internet (Ecc, 2008)
The next factor of success if security. If there is no security, customer will not be willing to use this network to do their financial transactions. There are lots of security threats which include invasion of individuals’ privacy and theft of confidential information. The good thing about these airlines is they had made very good precautions. The first is the identification and authentication. Secondly will be encryption followed by the firewalls. The identification of an online bank needs a proper internet address and the customer needs to login with their ID and password. The messages between both parties are all encrypted. This is to prevent hackers from viewing the message even if it is stolen. The particular encryption standard adopted by most browsers is called Secure Socket Layer (SSL). It is created in the web browser program and customers do not have to take any extra steps to set up the program. The airlines have developed firewalls, which are software or hardware blockage between the corporate network and the external Internet, to secure the servers and airline databases from other intruders. For example, MayBank connected to the Internet only after it had installed a firewall and made sure the firewall was not penetrable.
Overall, the ticket fees plus taxes is much cheaper compare with other airlines company in Malaysia. They are aiming for huge untapped market, especially for business travelers and for the first time flying customer segment. The strength of AirAsia is on-line booking system. With this system, passengers can make their booking in the comfort of their own home, or where ever there is an internet connection, and pay by credit card. Comparing with Malaysia Airline, the internet is now AirAsia`s most cost effective distribution channel. This is the solid reason why designers made their design choices. Customers can log on to its website www.airasia.com which is available in 7 languages – English, Bahasa Malaysia, Mandarin, Tamil, Bahasa Indonesia, Thai and Tagalog. No more phone calls, no more queuing. Online booking make fly become more convenient and customer oriented. To date, the company now sells 70% of its tickets over the Internet. Successful on-line booking system make AirAsia become more effective and cost-saving.
Nowadays, the biggest change over the process from an airline perspective has been the trend towards internet bookings and e-tickets. Online booking has also opened up the possibility of new sources of revenue for airlines. With passengers able to make and change the reservation through online, AirAsia and MAS Airlines can reduce the number of call centre, redeploying resources to more valuable functions and reducing administrative overheads. However, online-booking also create some problem due to careless of both parties. As an example, is the realistic of the information that is provided by the main website of AirAsia. When we login into the main website of AirAsia, we are able to see the big advertisement in the middle of the website. The advertisement show as below:
However, this price is relatively low and attractive. Many people see this kind of advertisement and never consider anything and straight away take action book the air ticket. Once they book the ticket, they just realize that the price is now excluding the taxes, administration fees and airport taxes. After add on all the taxes, the price could be RM150.00 more or less. Therefore, they feel that AirAsia cheat them and the post their blog in website and review by everyone. (AirAsia blog, news, forum, 2006) There are quite a number of cases that talking about this topic. In addition, people who are using internet to book the online ticket always make a mistake while booking the air ticket. It is just because everything is online transaction by using credit card, if there anything goes wrong people hard to claim back their money. Once they make the payment, the money is already charged, buyer cannot ask back for the money and if there is any cancellation, no fund will be return. Moreover, if they book wrongly and want to change the date or time they have to pay for the change details fees. The fee is around RM50.00. This is the thing they need to learn from mistakes and not take things for granted.
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