Global ‘Website Passport’ could boost trustworthy e-commerce

25 Mar 2011

Up to 70pc of online shoppers abandon their shopping carts before completing the checkout process, because of a lack of trust in the site. Now a Waterford-based company intends to change this with a ‘Web Passport’ that could establish trust with a site in five seconds.

Waterford-headquartered Global Business Register has forged a partnership with leading certification authorities (CA) and specialists in SSL security GlobalSign.

Together, they will offer a leading-edge website identity solution called the Website Passport.

The Website Passport allows website owners to conveniently prove their verified identity to users to help establish online credibility.

Ben Cronin, chief executive officer of Global Business Register, said websites need to establish trust within five seconds to ensure customers stay on the page and often professional-looking websites are not enough to establish trust.

End users are much more cautious due to constant press exposure of online threats and reports that 3m fraudulent websites are created every year.

“Up to 70pc of online shoppers abandon their shopping carts before completing the checkout process, because of a lack of trust in the site or in the vendor,” Cronin explained.

He said site seals have shown to improve the general trustworthiness of a website by 86pc and the online sales by 11-34pc, depending on the line of business.

GlobalSign Website Passport

The GlobalSign Website Passport allows website owners to present visitors with a collection of website and company information vetted by the GlobalSign Certificate Authority – all accessed with a single click.

Website owners can conveniently display the easy to understand and standardised identity information on all web pages using minimal space via the Passport Site Seal and gain instant credibility.

The passport can be customised by the website owner, choosing from an array of trust-enhancing ‘apps’. The first batch of apps includes official company information, Web of Trust (WOT) ratings and malware distribution monitoring, the latter of which alerts website owners if their site has been hacked and is unknowingly distributing hidden malware.

This alert service facilitates timely removal of any injected code before the website is flagged or blacklisted by search engines.

Global Business Register and GlobalSign will be offering Website Passports as a standalone product to allow all organisations with an online presence to establish their identity, and protect themselves and their customers from malware threats.

The passport was initially showcased at the RSA Conference in the US, then launched in the UK with GlobalSign and 123reg, and will be showcased at Infosec and Internet World in the UK in the coming months.

“The internet has become a minefield of fake and fraudulent websites, and the GlobalSign Passport is an essential tool for legitimate sites to build trust with their customers,” said Paul Tourret, managing director of GMO GlobalSign Limited.

The Irish version of the website passport is now available to purchase. Global Business Register said it is interested in hearing from Irish web-hosting companies who may also wish to resell the product in Ireland.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years