Bringing Trust Online

Nearly three weeks ago the news came over the wire. A press release stating that the chief executive of Emulex, a Costa Mesa maker of fiber-optic equipment, had quit and that the company was restating its quarterly earnings from a profit to a loss. By now everyone knows that it was a hoax, but the event shook up the stock market and made many question the credibility of the stories coming across various wire services.

One Portland company thinks that their solution could have prevented the entire episode.

While GeoTrust is initially focusing their efforts on B2B e-marketplaces, rather than on news services, company officials feel that their solution could be expanded to build a new degree of trust online.

“If this was applied to press releases, you would instantly know if a press release was authentic because you would see a True Credential,” says President and COO Jothy Rosenberg. If a fake report were to come across the wire, the true credential would be missing, or would appear from a different source than the company of origin.

Rosenberg admits that this kind of penetration will take time, but feels that their entry into the B2B e-marketplace is laying the foundation.

“What will happen as this starts to take hold is that people will expect it and look for it, and will throw information away from unknown and untrusted sources,” says Rosenberg.

GeoTrust offers online business exchanges with software to create an environment for Web-based transactions that where partners and documents are digitally identifiable. In addition a database of 12 million companies (at current) is stocked and continues to gather information on the credibility of those companies.

Co-developed with Ernst & Young, the basis for this solution is a trust model that identifies a host of online vulnerabilities, including identity information, business viability and reputation, information and system security, privacy and confidentiality, site experience and vertical market models

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