Research Issues in Trusted Mobile Commerce


Ling Liu / Li Xiong
{lingliu, lxiong}
CCB 221 / CCB 260


Systems and Databases


The emergence of wireless and mobile networks has made possible the admission of electronic commerce (e-commerce) to a new application and research subject: mobile commerce (m-commerce).  An important issue in m-commerce is to support trusted computing.  In an open m-commerce community, users often have to interact with unknown or unfamiliar peers and need to manage the risks involved with the interactions.  For example, a Palm Pilot user may download the Liberty Trojan masquerading as an innocent program for PalmOS from other malicious users which will wipe out all the contact information; users of mobile phones capable of receiving simple messaging may receive SMS messages that hide nefarious instructions.  Users need to reason about trust in order to avoid untrustworthy users and reduce risk.  Techniques such as smart cards solve part of the problem by authentication but cannot answer the question of who can be trusted.  Reputation based trust systems address such needs by harnessing the community feedback to help users to evaluate trustworthiness and predict future behaviors of each other. 


This project is designed to survey existing research on reputation-based trust systems and other trust issues in e-commerce and in m-commerce (if any).  You are expected to start with the papers listed in the references to get familiar with reputation, trust and m-commerce and then to do a literature search yourself to find related papers and uncover the research challenges in trusted m-commerce.  You are encouraged to discuss whether trust in m-commerce imposes new research challenges other than those for “traditional” e-commerce; whether the trust-building techniques in e-commerce can be applied to m-commerce directly or how to adapt them if not. 


  1. C. Dellarocas.  The Digitization of Word-of-Mouth: Promise and Challenges of Online Feedback Mechanisms.  Management Science (forthcoming).
  2. P. Resnick, R, Zeckhauser, E. Friedman, and K. Kuwabara.  Reputation Systems. Communications of the ACM, 43(12), December 2000.
  3. N. Sadeh.  m-Commerce Technologies, Services and Business Models.  Wiley, 2002


  1. A list of references you collected which are related to trust in m-commerce.  You are encouraged to list all references in a HTML document with clickable links.
  2. A report.  There is no minimum or maximum page limit for the report but we would encourage you not to exceed 10 pages (use 12 fontsize and double spacing).

Based on the quality of the report and the appropriateness of the list of references turned in by the due date.