IGF 2020 WS #294 Trust Your Source in Digital Transactions


Organizer 1: Private Sector, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Organizer 2: Private Sector, Asia-Pacific Group

Speaker 1: Emily Taylor, Technical Community, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 2: Rosa Delgado, Technical Community, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Speaker 3: Bertola Vittoria, Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)


Panel - Auditorium - 90 Min

Policy Question(s)

- What are the potential harms to society when consumers lose trust in the information they encounter online? - How do online interactions differ from analogous interactions in the offline world? - How do different constituencies define and gain trust in online interactions? - How can parties seeking goods, services, or information on the internet better increase trust in the results of their online activities? - How can parties offering goods, services, or information on the internet better increase the level of trust their audiences or customers place in them? - How can Internet governance, cyber security, and the domain name system be better structured to increase trust in online interactions?

Due to the non-personal nature of many Internet interactions, consumers (of all identities, ages, corporate statuses, geographies, etc.…) may be reluctant to purchase goods or services or otherwise trust the information they encounter due to the lack of traditional social or physical cues on which people rely on for purchasing in other contexts. In the words of the famous New Yorker magazine cartoon, “On the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog.” If consumers aren’t executing online transactions, it can have large societal and economic impact. How can we increase transparency and levels of trust between online consumers and the source of the goods or services they are purchasing?


GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-Being
GOAL 4: Quality Education
GOAL 5: Gender Equality
GOAL 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
GOAL 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
GOAL 10: Reduced Inequalities
GOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities
GOAL 12: Responsible Production and Consumption
GOAL 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


As the internet expands exponentially, consumers of all shapes (from individuals, to institutions and corporations), have never had more access to goods and services at the click of a button. With this increased access comes increased opportunity for consumers to be taken advantage of creating a layer of skepticism for every online interaction. Online users have an imperative to be able to trust the source of the goods and services they engage with. This workshop will cover placing trust in an online source and will concentrate on ways consumers at all levels can place their trust in online engagements. We will address the core issues driving the need for trust now more than ever; the impact lack of trust can have on society at large; the ways different stakeholders approach the concept of trust and how to secure it; objective ways both sophisticated and unsophisticated online users can confirm source and have confidence in a particular interaction, and methods for providers of goods and services to build and develop consumer trust in their offerings.

Expected Outcomes

- Creating a framework for increasing levels of trust between online users and the providers of goods and services and potentially developing a guide that can be shared as a resource; - Identifying ways Internet governance can support and provide increased transparency for efforts to use reputational signals during Internet communications

The session organizers intend to utilize instant polling mechanisms to gauge audience members’ level of trust with respect to registries, registrars and internet governance at large, as well as the representation of brands across the internet. The near-instant results will allow presenters to adapt the presentations and address how trust in various areas may be improved. Trust is the indispensable element to any collective effort toward any goal, including the Sustainable Development Goals. As both internet governance and attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals require collective and coordinated action, trust is essential.

Relevance to Internet Governance: The Internet is a vital and global resource that is used, maintained and serviced by a collection of users, companies, vendors, and governments. Internet Governance is the forum for the education, discourse and collective decisions on how to manage issues relating to creating not just consumer trust, but trust with all the stakeholders on the importance of these issues.

Relevance to Theme: The Internet works because of trust. Registries, registrars and registrants need to trust that each other is working in their best interest. Consumers also need to trust that each of those three entities are also working in their best interest, and resolving issues when they arise. Internet Governance is key to ensure there are mechanisms in place to protect not just consumers using the Internet, but also provide stakeholders the tools and processes to protect those consumers.

Online Participation


Usage of IGF Official Tool. Additional Tools proposed: We will use Zoom and Menti which is in on line polling application. Zoom will allow the free flow of information, between onsite participants and offline participants. Menti is a simple to use polling application where we can ask interactive questions with immediate responses. If Menti is not available in Poland, we will find a similar app or we may use Zoom voting feature.