Wal-Mart research paper

Security is a critical factor that influences Wal-Mart’s market performance.  As one of the largest retailer this company requires best possible in-store and IT security approaches that would keep its physical and online operations and its staff in safety.

Wal-Mart is known for its privacy policies that help customers to receive more control over their data they share with Wal-Mart that is collected at pharmacies, banking, and vision centers. (Hayes Weier, 2009)

In addition Omer (2010) claims that Wal-Mart became a partner of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in terrorist threat’ monitoring.  It means that Wal-Mart considers security a top priority and focuses on identification and reporting of the indicators of terrorism, crime and other threats. (Omer, 2010)

Wal-Mart’s management needs to learn and adopt the latest security trends in order to be able to answer the everyday’s security challenges this organization faces with. To do this, the emerging security trends has to be researched, possible steps to protect the organization, its customers, and its employees have to be suggested and the role of risk and cost-benefit analyses in making security decisions needs to be analyzed as well.


  1. 1.     Emerging security trends that may affect the organization

When discussing the latest security trends, the focus is made on the security of electronic operations and electronic commerce rather than on traditional in-store operations. Security of the traditional in-store services is a stable field and Wal-Mart has well developed in-store security systems.

How can the most powerful security challenges for organizational well-being be determined? In order to determine them the fundamental technology trends for the next five years have to be defined. Organizations have to make a focus in their security policies on these technology trends to be able to respond to security challenges.

Without a doubt, the major subject of concern of the modern security specialists is cybercrime. It is an absolutely new type of crime. A term cybercrime means a crime that is made with the use of computer technologies but it includes a few categories, such as: unauthorized access to the computer/computers network of organization or individual; disruption; another category of the cybercrime is a very popular nowadays theft of identity; and finally the traditional offenses that include the child’s pornography, and other similar cases. (Youm, 2003)

According to Jones (2006) the Internet age has bring a new aspect into relations of technology and the law. It’s important to understand that the major change happened to the flow of the information, because there is a virtually limitless stream of information now that can be accessed all around the globe.  The development of the e-commerce is tremendous and so it’s obvious that the cases of cybercrime in the e-commerce aren’t rare.

E-crime is very common nowadays and it causes significant damage to the US and other countries. It is known the cybercrime creates a loss of the US economy in the amount of $100 ”“ $250 billion per year.  The development of the e-commerce in the recent years was accompanied by the development of the e-commerce cybercrime. Nowadays it is a substantial part of the marketing activity of any company/corporation and the websites of these organizations often become the targets of for the cyber criminals.

The websites connected with the electronic networks and the cases of cybercrime towards the websites may result in the total disruption of the company’s business activity and may seriously harm its reputation and profits. In brief, even the business itself may be lost due to the actions of cyber criminals. Among the consequences of the cybercrime are the loss and damage of many companies’ reputations.

Among the major security trends the following could be defined:

  • “Securing virtualized environments
  • Finding alternative ways to deliver security
  • Software-as-a-Service
  • Cloud computing
  • Protecting the evolving network
  • Social engineering defense
  • Securing mobile devices” (Ma et al., 2009)

Alternative security options may serve as interesting approach to the modern security challenges. It means that organization may use new forms of packaging and delivering security services. First of all, the management of organization has to make a decision whether it prefers managing the security-related issues itself or cooperate with the company that provides security services. Then, there is an issue of security capabilities (simple vs. complex systems).

Software-as-a-Service, Cloud computing, Information security in a Web 2.0 world, protection of the evolving network are the elements are the latest trends in the delivery of security capabilities.

As for the social engineering attack, it is the manipulation and the interaction that target a certain person (not a computer) in order to obtain valuable information or perform some action.  These attacks may be arranged through the phone, the internet (particularly through the social networking websites that attract online criminals because of their global reach) or even personally. The information that a social engineer aims to obtain include the ID number, username, password, server names, credit card numbers, and other similar details. In the process of social engineering attacks malicious software may be installed by the social engineer or certain website may be visited.

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