As the Internet grows in popularity every day, so too does electronic commerce. Electronic commerce, simply put, is the exchange of money for goods and services via electronic means. In other words, electronic commerce is when you purchase something off of the Internet. Electronic commerce is often referred to as e-commerce, or e-business. In this paper I will be discussing the technical side of e-commerce, security, different points of view regarding e-business, and of course my personal opinion and experiences. First I would like to discuss the types of e-business. E-business can be anything from purchasing a toaster from a department store online to checking your bank statement online. All are examples of the many aspects of e-business. There are several aspects of e-business unique to it. When comparing traditional business to e-business, one can see several differences between the two. The most obvious difference when buying standard goods (such as a toaster, a book, or a new computer) is the store. When dealing with e-business there is no “real” store or merchandise to look at. It is all presented through the merchant’s webpage, or by other electronic means. You will not be able to touch, or inspect potential purchases. All you will have to go on is perhaps a picture and a brief description of the item in question. This is obviously a big change from traditional store-based business practices. Why would any self-respecting consumer buy something via e-business if they were unable to touch, or inspect a potential purchase, and there is a real store just down the street? There are several reasons why e-business is appealing to a growing amount of people. For example, e-business is based on the Internet. If you are using the Internet, you are not bound by geography. You can access any site, anywhere in the world from the comfort of your computer chair. What does this mean to the consumer? Now the consumer has access to several things they didn’t before.
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