Everyday people go on the Internet and make purchases for different products or services, just like they would in a store. The process of using the Internet or computer networks in order to buy or sell information, services, or products is something we have come to know as E-commerce. This includes all transactions involved in order to conduct business over the fore mentioned networks. The act of buying or selling over these networks allows for secure paperless transactions to happen electronically. It has also given many businesses the ability to expand from local and regional markets to national and global markets.
In an effort to understand E-commerce more fully, we must first look at its history and how it became what it is today. E-commerce had its beginnings in the 1970’s and 80’s when businesses started to use computer networks to make electronic transactions. initially E-commerce just involved business to business transactions over private networks, it wasn’t until the mid 1990’s that it became completely open to the public. These businesses were using Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), which was a transfer of electronic data from computer to computer and Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT), which was an electronic transfer of money from one computer to another in order to do business with each other. Doing business like this would guarantee that the transactions would be completed in a faster and less expensive way. As with most other technologies, computer networking capabilities would advance, eventually leading to the public use of the Internet and open the doors of E-commerce to the world.