Marketing Vulnerabilities in an Age of Online Commerce

Marketing Vulnerabilities in an Age of Online Commerce

Robert S. Owen
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-026-4.ch401
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This article provides an overview of strategic and tactical threats to the marketing efforts of businesses engaged in online marketing activities. Marketing-related assets that are vulnerable to attack include networking and hardware resources, human resources, information resources, promotion resources, and brand equity and customer good will. Vulnerable areas that an organization should protect include its core network and computing infrastructure, its internal social infrastructure, domain name registrations related to its branding, and branding exploits on external social networks. Although hacks of networking and hardware resources are of concern, the focus of this article is on encouraging marketing managers and strategists to consider a wider variety of external and internal threats.
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Strategies And Tactics For Attack

The following are emerging strategies and tactics that have been enabled by online activities.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Chain E-Mail, Chain Letter: An e-mail letter that directs recipients to forward multiple copies of the same letter to others.

Trojan: A malicious program that is hidden within a seemingly useful and harmless program. Also known as a Trojan horse.

Domain Name Squatting: Registering a trademark, an organization’s name, or person’s name as a domain name with the intention to profit from traffic to an unrelated Web site or by reselling the domain name back to the person or organization.

Spoofing: Pretending to be the owner of a trademark or organization name; registering and using a domain name that is deceptively similar to a trademark or organization name. This could be through transposing words or inverting a phrase.

Click Fraud: Clicking on an online advertisement link for the premeditated purpose of causing a pay-per-click advertiser to pay for the click without the intent to take any other actions (such as buy a product).

Domain Name Grabbing: Registering an abandoned or lapsed domain name immediately after it is released by a registrar.

Social engineering: Manipulating people through their natural trust or desire to help in order to trick them into divulging information or performing actions.

Exploit: An action that takes advantage of weaknesses or vulnerabilities in software or hardware.

Urban Legend: A story that contains some measure of truth or fact but is embellished with misinformation and repeatedly passed from person to person.

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