What will the long-term impact of electronic contracting be on the nation's business? The impact of electronic contracting is the enforceability of the contract. Since the federal government enacted the Electronic Signature in Global and National Commerce Act (Electronic Signature..., 2001) which make electronic contracts as enforceable as a paper contract that is signed by all parties. The ease of completing most electronic contracts will increase commerce exponentially. This will help business by increasing efficiency, and reduce the actual paper involved in paperwork. This cost reduction can be passed on to the costumer. While many believe in eye contact in their businesses, the need for this personal contact has decreased as more business is conducted of the phone and electronically.
What are the potential pitfalls you see with electronic contracting? As a consumer this could create a problem in personal identification. Is it really you that e-signed the contract? Most consumers are do not have access to personal smart cards or biometrics and if some un-scrupulous people get the information that is used to sign the contract electronically then you as a consumer are liable for a contract you have no idea about.
There has been a rash of identity theft lately and this could considerably cause liability issues for all parties involved.
These are just some of the problems and benefits that occur when business transactions are done solely online.
Cheeseman, H. R. (2006). Contemporary Business and Online Commerce Law (5th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall.
Electronic Signature in Global and National Commerce Act (2001, June). Retrieved October 18, 2006, from http://www.ftc.gov/os/2001/06/esign7.htm