Business transactions form a crucial part of the e-commerce landscape as organizations and individuals carry out various business operations. These transactions are critical and play a central role in the success of e-commerce models. Because of the significance of e-commerce transactions, the need of providing online assurance is of paramount importance. Non-repudiation is therefore, used to provide online users with an assurance that parties to a transaction will not deny their participation in any transactions (Suh & Han, 2003). Whereas, repudiation is closely associated with authentication it also ensures that online users to do deny their involvement in critical transactions.
E-commerce models support nonrepudiation to discourage trading parties from denial of being involved in critical transactions (Suh & Han, 2003). In the e-commerce environment, nonrepudiation is accomplished through a number of strategies. One strategy involves the creation of evidence, collection of evidence, preservation of evidence and availing of evidence and lastly verifying the evidence. These measures are often implemented in e-commerce models for the purpose of mitigating security risks that can result in parties denying their involvement in online transactions (Koblitz & Menezes, 2004). With the use of nonrepudiation strategies such as using secure protocols and digital certificates, it is possible to validate senders and other parties taking part in any online transaction.
Application of Symmetric Key in E-commerce
There are several ways of ensuring that users authenticate themselves when using an e-commerce system. Use of symmetric key is one of the techniques that allow users to provide their identity using a single key For e-commerce models that use symmetric key, two parties require to have a single key that must be similar. This key is made of a secret code that will be used to decrypt and encrypt packets of information that is sent over to the internet.
A symmetric key works in a straightforward way. Firstly, computers or other any appropriate device must first exchange a predefined key that will be used to encrypt and decrypt packets of data. This exchange is done before the computers carry out any exchange of data. After the computers have shared the key, this key is stored in a directory for use during the exchange of information. With a key stored in one of the directories, the computer is responsible for sending data encrypts packets using the symmetric key and thereafter sends the information through the internet. This information is encrypted and cannot be viewed unless one of the computers has the key. Once the packets of data have been received the symmetrical key is used to decrypt the information, before it is assembled to provide meaningful data intended for the recipient (Qin, 2009). This technique of encryption is suitable in sending a lot of information between a sender and recipient over the internet.
128-Bit versus 256-Bit Encryption
128 bit and 256 bit encryptions provide some of the common cryptographic options available for securing data in any digital environment. Whereas, 256-bit encryption was developed after 128-bit was already in use as encryption techniques both techniques vary from another. 128 and 256- bit encryption are cipher options that can be used to protect data that need to be transmitted over an insecure medium like the internet. When data is encrypted using either of the technologies, both offer reliable security, but the 256-bit is more secure than 128-bit security. When data is protected using the 256 encryption key, this data is more secure as compared to that secured using the 128-bit encryption. When used in the e-commerce environment, it is argued that 128-bit encryption offers enhance security, but the 256-bit encryption offers a superior security option for data. When intruders hack to intercept data encrypted in 256-bit encryption technique, it will be impossible for them to find out the cipher code required to decrypt the data. This does not mean that the 128-bit encryption is weaker. In reality, the 128-bit is stronger, but its security cannot surpass that of the 256-encryption technique (Newman, 2009).
Data Encryption in E-Commerce without Public and Private Keys
The role of data encryption cannot be overestimated especially in the e-commerce environment. When using unsecure medium like internet, securing data through encryption is a necessary process that ensure that data is secured and its integrity preserved. Internet users do not have to worry about having public or private keys for their own user. This is because e-commerce models security features that allow them to share and use private and public keys when carrying out transactions.
Most of the e-commerce tools and applications support the use of encryption keys by default. When in use, the e-commerce technologies generate private and public keys using key generators, which are applications that define particular keys and send them to other host that are required for particular transactions. This process is done in a seamless way that does not need the intervention of the users. This process is beneficial because it does not involve the users who may not be fully aware of the complexities and technical specification of private and public keys.
In a typical e-commerce environment, e-commerce applications use servers to stores digital certificates that provide a basis for the sharing of private and public key. When need arise, a computer application will generate a public key and store in the host it intends to share data with. This key is use encrypt data that will be sent to the host after it is has been encrypted using the private key stored in a directory of the send. This process is simplifies securing of data.