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Enabling Trust in the Digital World
..:: Enabling Trust in the Digital World

The market for international electronic transactions is expanding at great speed, but beneficial results are not a given. For the potential use of ICT to be fulfilled, a number of enabling conditions need to be in place. These include effective development and deployment of security-enhancing techniques, in ways that are able to meet the requirements of specific users, organisations and governments on a global basis. Without the assurance of security in digital transactions, the use of ICT will be thwarted and result in costly side-effects.

Fundamental complications arise, however, because of a combination of information problems, transaction costs, institutional failure and strategic interplay between the various actors involved in designing and deploying ICT. Together these factors hamper the articulation of demand for, and the effective diffusion of, comprehensive solutions to the issues that arise with respect to digital trust and security. So far, this playing field has been strongly fragmented.

Against this background, the present report examines what could be done to enhance trust in the digital world. The focus is particularly on mechanisms to support effective authentication. Reflecting on ways to improve outcomes, and what can be judged feasible given the evolving trends and the present state of institutions and markets around the world, the study in part takes the shape of a feasibility study in regard to the “Global Trust Center” (GTC).

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