During a time when identity theft and fraud continue to be among consumers' top concerns, eBay seems to be doing its part to safeguard its customers' informationand users are taking notice.
The online shopping site was voted the second most trusted company in 2008 behind American Express, according to information security researcher, Ponemon Institute, which compiles the annual list on behalf of TRUSTe, an Internet privacy firm.
eBay moves up from No. 8 on the 2007 list. This year's improved ranking shows the company's dedication to information security, says Scott Shipman, eBay's global privacy leader.
"We take our customers' privacy very seriously and strive to be as transparent as possible to gain and maintain their trust," Shipman reports. "eBay's privacy and information security teams do an outstanding job of identifying privacy and security issues and heading them off at the pass. The privacy ranking is a good touch point of our progress, and it is an honor to share the spotlight with so many accomplished brands."
The annual Most Trusted Companies for Privacy List shows improvements for the technology sector and a slight slip for financial services. But many companies that have been voted into the top 20 in the past continue to hold strong.
"That we see many of the same names ranked among the top 20 companies, year after year, strongly suggests that consumer perceptions are not superficial, but are in fact the result of diligent and successful execution of thoughtful privacy strategies," says Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder of the Ponemon Institute.
IBM and Amazon are in the top four for the second year in a row. Johnson & Johnson ranks fifth, improving its position by one since last year.
Nevertheless, consumers continue to worry about fraud, notes the Ponemon Institute and TRUSTe. Only 45 percent of respondents think they have control over their personal information, down from 56 percent in 2006.
The concerns are understandable. Crimes against retailers and e-commerce merchants continue to rise during the country's economic recession, notes the Retail Industry Leaders Association and CyberSource Corp. Among the largest and fastest-growing retailers in the country, 84 percent saw an increase in theft or shoplifting. And online merchants expect to lose $4 billion to online fraud this yeara new record-highCyberSouce reports, so privacy is very important.
"Consumers want to do business with brands they believe they can trust," adds Ponemon.
Other top-10 companies on this year's "Most Trusted" list are Hewlett Packard, the U.S. Postal Service, Proctor & Gamble, Nationwide and Charles Schwab. Apple, Yahoo!, Facebook, Verizon and FedEx appeared on the list for the first time this year at Nos. 8, 14, 15, 17 and 18, respectively.
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Auctiva staff writers constantly monitor trends and best practices of those selling on eBay and elsewhere online. They attend relevant training seminars and trade shows and regularly discuss the market with PowerSellers and other market experts.