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US Commerce Dept. Wants You To Shop Safely Without Pants

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By Nick Wilson/Special to LAist

Online shopping offers many benefits: unprecedented selection, effortless price comparison, and the ability to buy that Kobe beef iPod Nano case you’ve secretly coveted without wasting energy on unnecessary chores like putting pants on.

Despite the benefits, online shopping is not without its headaches. In addition to the burden of keeping track of different logins and passwords, cybercrime is a growing threat. According to the Internet Crime Complaint Center, US consumers lost $560 million to online fraud last year.

The US Commerce Department hopes to change all of that. Bloomberg reports, “The U.S. Commerce Dept. is spearheading a new online security system that experts say will eliminate the password maze and perhaps boost e-commerce. The plan calls for a single sign-in each time a computer or phone is turned on, using a device such as a digital token, a smartcard, or a fingerprint reader. Once logged in, users would have access to any website that has signed up for the program.”