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Bad Habits of Trusting Online Essay

One thing that I have learned as a young adult is that trusting is not always the best thing to do and in fact it could turn out to be the worst thing you ever did. Now working in the fast-food business every day, I learned that trust is more than just believing that someone else knows what they are talking about; trust is also about knowing what you’re getting whether that means a soft drink that is full to the top instead of half way, for a rude customer; or knowing that behind another computer screen there might not always be a good guy trying to help you get your money into your bank account. Instead their goal is to take your money and never be traced again. Trusting the internet with bank information, social security numbers, and personal information is the perfect antidote for online identity theft. This fraud is causing banks’ bad reputations, financial losses to thousands of Americans in the United States and will have a huge impact on E-commerce (activities that relate to the buying and selling of goods and services over the internet).

In 2007, a study from Cyveillance, a company involved in cyber intelligence, showed that within the same two months, 1 million social security cards were thought to be stolen off of the internet; and in that same year online phishing which can be defined as the practice of using fraudulent e-mails and copies of legitimate websites to extract financial data from computer users for purposes of identity theft; had grown by fifty percent (Britt).Trusting the internet with social security numbers is one of the worse things to do, because it allows hackers more abilities and more information. So this means while you sit, frantic about how you trusted online sites, the bad guy on the other screen profits from their access to your credit cards, bank accounts and your identifying information. The worst part about it all is that after the fraud it is unlikely that the person who caused you so many problems would ever be caught or punished for their harm to you. Online identity theft allows criminals to do crimes or things in your name, or even change bank account information. For some people like Amy Browne, a Yahoo Contributor and a mother, she was a victim of identity theft.

Amy experienced a harsh battle for her identity, on Oct 19, 2011 Amy did not only lose a lot financially when her rent card was short hundreds of dollars, she also lost her son’s trust and love when she accused him of stealing the rent money each time. What I understood from Browne and her experience with online identity theft was that it can be very confusing, scary, and hurtful. The real problem with identity theft is that it cannot be taken back, so for Browne and her family they suffered. The solution to making online phishing decrease from fifty percent is to rely less on online interactions, because when an actual banker is in front of you he or she does not ask you for your social security number. Instead they let you type it into a pin pad, never having a chance for identity theft to occur.

For banks such as Wells Fargo and Bank of America, protection from identity theft have become extremely important to their companies, which is why they have incorporated tools and alerts, like password changes to help their customers be safer from online identity theft. With the frauds becoming more sophisticated, banks need to find better ways of identifying the crimes. For banks that do not want bad reputation, this means hiring more staff, or investing in technologies that help identify the acts of bank fraud .As Americans we are a bit greedy, and scared to lose what we have worked hard for. Some people spend years working a family business simply because of traditions dear to relatives that started family legacies. We all know that leaving our money at home in a safe is predictable, and that leaving it under our beds could be dangerous in case of a fire or flood.

So we trust our banks. What we have found out through Daniel T. Woolley in his journal, “Journal of retail banking services, was that loses attributed to computer fraud, theft, and vandalism across all industry segments are currently estimated at $10 billion – and rising steadily. (Woolley.) Now hearing scary things like this make it hard to believe that the banks might not be much safer than online fraud, but it is safer, because banks are coming up with solutions to help their customers be completely safe from identity fraud. The solution is that trusting the banks may not be the best thing to some people because there are still occasions of identity theft within bank accounts, but what has to be recognized by consumers and customers is the amount of effort and time the bankers are taking to try and keep customers safe.

In reality the banks will do whatever is needed to satisfy their customers, they need customers just as much as customers need them. Numbers of fraud within banks has fallen due to the regulations from the bankers. Teddy de Rivera, EVP of the Internet services group at Wells Fargo reports “We know that because of all the tools we have in our layered security approach, as well as through relationships we’ve built with other banks, the actual losses we’re seeing — and we guarantee all online banking fraud losses — has actually dropped year over year” (Crosman).

De Rivera does not prove his facts but the number of losses he suffered from at the bank were very little. De Rivera says that relationships with other banks and security have been the key to helping the numbers lessen. Being aware and educated about banking is the key to finding the best way to keep your money safe and accessible. Overall banks are more reliable than the internet because banks are constantly being looked at by bankers to help their customers with identity safety. In America today there are nearly eighty seven percent of people who shop online. E—commerce -activities that relate to the buying and selling of goods and services over the internet –has had negative effects due to the amount of fraud and identity theft with online transactions. What this means is that online businesses like Amazon, and EBay are suffering from business loss.

The amounts of threats are scaring their customers away. As Americans the enjoyable things are cheap and quick to have. Although everyone doesn’t look at price ranges most people would go for the lowest price they could weather they are rich or poor. For example Toms shoes were founded in 2006 by Blake Mycoskie, who came up with a very inspirational theory to help children in need. With every pair of Toms that is sold another pair is given to a child in need. Not only does it feel good as a customer to know that you are hip and in style it also feels rewarding to know that you are helping others. Since the big boom from the Toms shoes Mycoskie has been able to donate ten million pairs of shoes to children in need. At the start Toms were fifty dollars a pair, now they can be found in places such as Nordstrom’s and EBay for way cheaper. As customers we want the best deals and online shopping does its best to help customers find those deals. Nordstrom’s sells Toms for thirty seven dollars whereas EBay sells them for twenty five dollars. There are several benefits for online shopping customers, they are able to buy anything at any time, it is convenient, lots of discounts, and has a large variety.

There are also disadvantages to online shopping as well, shipping costs, must wait for shipment, cannot inspect purchase physically, cannot use cash to pay, and not all sites are trustable, fraud number are increasing with online purchases. On most sites like EBay and Amazon customers are able to leave feedback on their products which helps other customers to know the good and the bad in products, well when EBay made the decision to cut out their buyers reference with the hopes of better customer experience; customers argue the act will cause more fraud. “EBay said the changes to the feedback system will improve accuracy and accountability. Critics argue that the move could increase buyer fraud. Opponents have left thousands of comments complaining about the elimination of negative buyer references (eBay’s). One of the hardest things about online shopping is the trust, not know if you will get the actual item you are shopping for. About a year ago my mother was on the hunt by my side for Toms that were red; we looked in stores but could not find them, so we relied on the internet. After she put in her card number and her personal information we knew the transaction was complete.

I remember waiting weeks and watching my shipment tracker as the days counted down for the delivery day, but when I got my shipment of red toms we were shocked to find that inside the random box not even Toms symbolized there laid a one dollar gold coin. My mother was not able to get her money back or a replacement for the wrong product which shoes how un-predictable online shopping can be. In some cases convenience is necessary but how helpful is it to shop online and get the wrong product, and end up having to wait or except a loss as my mother did. Fraud has become a very big issue in society today. The more willing and vulnerable a person is the more likely their chance is to be a victim of identity theft and fraud. Currently we live in a place that moves forty miles per hour daily, individuals now a days don’t just work one job and go home to their families, but instead a second or third job. Money has always had negative and positive effects on people’s lives whether it helps build or makes loss, money doesn’t change.

Just like money doesn’t change so doesn’t the people the Americans who steal, harm, and rob others via online fraud. Trusting someone else with your money that you work hard for can be hard whether you spend it online or in person, but the positive to buying all items in person is a valid recipe for returns, a trained worker to help with social security issues rather than an operator, and the fact that all in person interactions are going to be more recognizable than transactions online. As Americans we put our trust in a lot of people, fast-food workers, doctors, and bankers with that being said we hope for the best outcomes and sometimes can be surprised at the carelessness, and disrespect of some of the people we trust the most. With online Identity theft growing so quickly and the knowing of the subject, as individuals we have to be more knowledgeable towards things in order to escape completely from fraud online. With each transaction online there is an unknown that could be a person, scenario, or problem. Americans have to recognize the damages of trusting the internet with bank information, social security numbers, and personal information because online identity theft is real. Don’t share personal information with the web.

Citations:
Britt, Phil. “Keeping up with fraudsters: to fight fraud, banks must gather information about current schemes and educate consumers.” Bank Systems + Technology Aug. 2005: 31+. Academic OneFile. Web. 11 Mar. 2014. Trusting the internet with social security numbers is one of the worse things to do, because it allows hackers more abilities and more information. So this means while you sit, frantic about how you trusted online sites, the bad guy on the other screen profits from their access to your credit cards, bank accounts and your identifying information. The worst part about it all is that after the fraud it is unlikely that the person who caused you so many problems would ever be caught or punished for their harm to you. Online identity theft allows criminals to do crimes or things in your name, or even change bank account information.

Crosman, Penny. “Standing Guard.” Bank Systems + Technology 1 May 2010: 12. Academic OneFile. Web. 11 Mar. 2014. De Rivera does not prove his facts but the number of losses he suffered from at the bank were very little. De Rivera says that relationships with other banks and security have been the key to helping the numbers lessen. Being aware and educated about banking is the key to finding the best way to keep your money safe and accessible. Overall banks are more reliable than the internet because banks are constantly being looked at by bankers to help their customers with identity safety.

“eBay’s Plan To Eliminate Negative Buyer Comments Draws Fire; eBay says sellers will no longer be able to leave negative or neutral feedback about buyers.” InformationWeek 7 Feb. 2008. Academic OneFile. Web. 12 Mar. 2014. EBay will do away with negative buyer references, along with a host of other changes it says are aimed at improving customer experience. What EBay has to recognize is that by shutting their customers out and giving them no voice to be able to say how they felt about products is giving customers more reason to assume that EBay cannot be trusted.

Woolley, Daniel T. “Electronic robbery: how to prevent huge losses in nanoseconds.” Journal of Retail Banking Services Summer 1998: 49+. Academic OneFile. Web. 12 Mar. 2014. Its hard to believe that the banks might not be much safer than online fraud, but it is safer, because banks are coming up with solutions to help their customers be completely safe from identity fraud. The solution is that trusting the banks may not be the best thing to some people because there are still occasions of identity theft within bank accounts, but what has to be recognized by consumers and customers is the amount of effort and time the bankers are taking to try and keep customers safe.


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