Shoppers Fear Online Fraud

The rise in cyber crime hasn’t gone unnoticed by online shoppers. A recent study by Forrester Research Inc. found that consumer confidence in online credit card security, at its peak in 2000 and 2001, has dropped sharply since then, following major spikes in online fraud and identity thefts. Nearly one-third of Web shoppers today are technology pessimists, compared to only 16% in 1998, and every time news of cyber fraud hits the media, “these consumers think twice about how safe their credit card really is and whether buying online is worth the risk,” reports the study. That doesn’t spell doom for e-commerce — on the contrary, Forrester researchers expect it to surge from $95.7 billion this year to $229.9 billion in 2008 — but it does mean that retailers and card issuers must enhance Web site and database security, consider adopting security programs, and tout zero liability for fraudulent online transactions, according to the report.