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How could I know whether the eCommerce site I use uses SET (Secure Electronic Transaction). I know SET is a standard. But I see only an SSL connection

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2 Answers 2

I know SET is a standard

As Avid pointed out, the SET standard was abandoned in favor of the 3-D Secure scheme; so no, it isn't really a standard. If I recall correctly, the protocol never really gained wide-acceptance due to its complexity and cost versus simply using SSL.

How could I know whether the eCommerce site I use uses SET?

The chances that your ecommerce store use SET are very low (<1%). However, there is a simple way you can check to see if the ecommerce store uses SET... if you need to install an "e-wallet" client-side application, then you can rest assured you are using SET. However, not having to install the client-app won't tell you much because SET can be implemented on the backend server, in which case the problem of having to use an e-wallet is offloaded to the server in a way that is transparent to the user.

In the end, there isn't a 100% accurate way to tell whether or not you are using SET, but I think it's a moot point given its lack of acceptance or use.

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According to Wikipedia (emphasis mine):

Secure Electronic Transaction (SET) was a standard protocol for securing credit card transactions over insecure networks, specifically, the Internet. SET was not itself a payment system, but rather a set of security protocols and formats that enable users to employ the existing credit card payment infrastructure on an open network in a secure fashion. However, it failed to gain traction. VISA now promotes the 3-D Secure scheme.

So, no, that site most probably is not using SET. And apparently, it shouldn't be.

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