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Old 03-20-2007, 07:52 AM   #1
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Default Five reasons consumers don't book travel online

"Despite improved customer-satisfaction ratings at several e-commerce companies, online travel sites still suffer from security , performance and customer perception woes that cause potential travelers to put down their mouse and pick up the phone to book trips."
http://www.infoworld.nl/idgns/berich...2572A400017306
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Old 03-20-2007, 08:17 AM   #2
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Here's an interesting article about using credit cards online

http://blog.eogn.com/eastmans_online...credit_ca.html

I know some people are intimidated by the finality of the process and the chance of making a mistake. My mother at 89, just took the plunge and booked a ticket for a weekend trip from FL to NJ.

I do almost all on the internet. The only times I make a telephone call is when I'm using freq flyer miles for a large group and it gets too complicated for the web sites.
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Old 03-20-2007, 08:36 AM   #3
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Exclamation

I was fascinated by the article's discussion of the large fear of online credit card information theft. The same people that fear online theft of credit card information, apparently have no compunction about picking up the phone and orally giving a stranger their credit card information, including security code.

Personally, I'd rather type in my credit card information on a "secure web site" where that part of my order goes directly to the bank, and is not stored on the merchant web site, than give some stranger the "keys to the kingdom" over the phone, where they have a chance to write down the information for themselves, and use it when and how they please.

Unless it's an emergency of some sort, I no longer order anything on the phone, or give my credit card information to anyone, I don't personally know, on the phone.
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Old 03-20-2007, 08:55 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ned View Post
I was fascinated by the article's discussion of the large fear of online credit card information theft.
Ned, you have to keep in mind that many if not most genealogists are older.
A good portion of them only bought a computer when it became obvious that it was the best way to keep track of all the different family lines.
I sometimes represent a software company at genealogy conferences.
The software is an easy to use way to pull different files and formats into one presentation and produce an auto run cd or dvd to share with others.
I'd estimate that 1/3 of the people I saw said "oh, I'm not up to that, yet"
They have learned how to use the genealogy program that they have, send and receive email and use the genealogy (free) services on line, but that's about it.

Because we use the computer as a matter of course, we sometimes lose track of the fact that there are still a lot of people who do not.
I have seen people hand their digital cameras to the clerk in CVS and ask him to take the pictures off the camera, print them and clear the memory card!
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Old 03-20-2007, 09:20 AM   #5
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Arrow

You're a hundred percent right about older people and their fears of computers, and technology in general. I understand that, and I sympathize with their fears, much of which is borne out of a lack of knowledge, sensational computer theft stories, and fear of the unknown.

What I don't understand is that these same people have no fear of handing over their credit card information over the phone to a total stranger. They can't watch what this person is doing with their information, and they don't have any idea if the company they're calling has any supervision on board, or safeguards, to protect their information from being misused or outright stolen. If they fear online sales, they should be at least doubly afraid of the telephone sales.

I have always been hesitant to make phone orders and give out my credit card information over the phone. I was never a big catalog buyer because of that. Even on the 'net, I am careful. For example, if a vendor requires me to store my credit card information on their web site, in order to make purchases from them, I purchase from someone else.
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Old 03-20-2007, 12:24 PM   #6
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Ned

You are 100 percent correct. I have resolved numerous ID theft cases in the past several years. In every case, the problem was the paper trial, not the electronic one.

With good computer security and good internet practices, the odds of ID theft happening to you in minimal at best.

One of the common everyday practices which leads to ID theft is giving your card to a waiter. Consider, you are giving you card to a stranger, who takes it out of your sight for any length of time, who may then give it to another stranger to actually run it, and sometimes a third strangers brings the card back. Now that's unsecure.
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Old 03-20-2007, 01:14 PM   #7
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Ned

You are 100 percent correct. I have resolved numerous ID theft cases in the past several years. In every case, the problem was the paper trial, not the electronic one.

With good computer security and good internet practices, the odds of ID theft happening to you in minimal at best.

One of the common everyday practices which leads to ID theft is giving your card to a waiter. Consider, you are giving you card to a stranger, who takes it out of your sight for any length of time, who may then give it to another stranger to actually run it, and sometimes a third strangers brings the card back. Now that's unsecure.
You are so right about waiters and credit cards. Consider this scenario, which I witnessed personally just last year. I was picking up an order of salsa and queso at my favorite Mexican food place when a waiter brought over a credit card and receipt for the cashier to run. The cashier was nowhere in sight, since she was off getting my order. I, however, a complete stranger under the control of no one, was standing right there...looking at this person's credit card. Not sure what to do, I flipped the card over upside down, so the number wouldn't be visible to anyone else. The same waiter moseyed back over at some point, flipped the card back over to face up, and walked off again. I flipped the card over again and waited for the cashier to come back. In the meantime, the customer with the credit card wandered up to the counter to find out what happened to her credit card right about the same time the cashier came back. The transaction was completed and the (still oblivious) customer went back to her table to collect her family. After I paid for my order, I followed her and let her know what had happened with her card while it was out of her sight. When I left the restaurant a minute later, she was yelling at the manager. Good for her.

The only reason why this place remained on my favorites list is because it still maintains a cashier counter where most customers pay their bills. However, if you hand over a credit card at the table, the waiter will "take care of it" for you. But in my case, I always went to the counter and watched the procedure. I read that some TGI Fridays are experimenting with a handheld credit card machine so they can bring it around to the table instead of absconding with your card for who knows where. If this doesn't turn out to have a complete set of its own problems, I hope all restaurants adopt this.

All this to say that using your credit card can be risky, no matter who you're dealing with and no matter in what medium. I've been a constant critic of Amazon for their "one-click" order system that retains my credit card in their system "for my convenience." I told them ID theft is not convenient to anyone. Last time I checked (which was not recently, since I'm hesitant to do business with them), they seem to have done away with that system in favor of making you enter your card information each time. Please correct me if I'm wrong. As long as I know who I'm calling, I don't have too much trouble giving out my card information on the phone. Same with the web. I only deal with reputable and well-known companies. And on the rare occasion I have to take a chance with someone I don't know (or a waiter, for that matter), I take comfort in the fact that I do monitor my statements every month, more often if I feel it's warranted, and I check my credit reports at least once a year. If you're using a credit card, you have some nice safeguards in place to take care of any problems before they become really widespread (most of the time). But you can be the safest person in the world with your information and someone can still steal it (or at least make it available to be stolen - see this story: http://www.kcbd.com/Global/story.asp?s=6195524 ). Be cautious, but you don't have to handicap yourself. Just do whatever makes you most comfortable. And try not to fall for any scams.

Last edited by Gesualdo; 03-20-2007 at 01:24 PM.
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Old 03-20-2007, 01:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gesualdo View Post
I've been a constant critic of Amazon for their "one-click" order system that retains my credit card in their system "for my convenience." I told them ID theft is not convenient to anyone. Last time I checked (which was not recently, since I'm hesitant to do business with them), they seem to have done away with that system in favor of making you enter your card information each time.
I agree in general with most of your comments but Amazon's 1-Click system is, for me, a very easy way to cheaply obtain goods. Moreover, I do trust them with the credit card information. The system is still in full force. But, if you don't like it you are not forced to use it.
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Old 03-20-2007, 04:33 PM   #9
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I am intimately familiar with Amazon's system. It is one of the safest in existence. They go to great pains to keep improving its security. I'm a regular customer of Amazon. I'm a member of Amazon Prime. I don't store my credit card info at Amazon. I give them a lot of credit for not requiring credit card information is stored in their system. It's one of the things I like about the company.

Their customer service is also excellent. Over the years I have had a few problems with shipments from them, including defective merchandise. They took care of each and every problem promptly, and fairly.

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I agree in general with most of your comments but Amazon's 1-Click system is, for me, a very easy way to cheaply obtain goods. Moreover, I do trust them with the credit card information. The system is still in full force. But, if you don't like it you are not forced to use it.
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Old 03-20-2007, 05:08 PM   #10
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Ned, I also am Amazon Prime and it is amazing how helpful it is. Being 10 miles from town is not as easy as being in a Big City to obtain the daily goods needed to sustain existence. Mainly the time required, and I already do a "town run" about once a week. Amazon Prime lets me quickly identify and buy items which I don't need immediately (which is most of the time) and has three big advantages: almost always lower prices than available locally, no sales tax, and free second day shipping. There's simply no better deal.

As, as you, their Customer Service is tops. Few problems in the first place, but those that do happen are solved quickly and efficiently.

My wife says she hopes Amazon never starts to sell lumber, wine, hay, and dog food. If they did she's afraid I'd never leave home!
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