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Protocols and Standards

Protocols and standards can be simply called rules and instructions for implementing a system or project in an organization. They can specify the time, process, mechanics and procedures for running an application. Standards can be describes as the rules of an application or an area whereas protocols are the instructions and tools for the implementation of the rules concerning the applications and the field. Different companies and industries set standards which serve as a benchmark and are widely followed, for example; ISO quality standards.

Protocols are the instructions for communication between internet applications and devices. Examples of protocols on which internet and web are built include hyper-text transfer protocol (HTTP), file transfer protocol (FTP), transmission control protocol / internet protocol (TCP/IP), secure sockets layer. Protocols are important because they specify instructions for moving information around the web in a secure way.

As the use of internet technology has widely increased, the importance of standards and protocols has also grown as these are rules and instructions on which web and internet are built and allow for the free movement of information (Halsall 2000). Authorization, Authentication and Access Control With the growth of internet, the terms authorization, authentication and access control are being constantly

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heard in the field. Authentication refers to when the person proves his identity to the website.

This is the most common in the use of internet since users are frequently asked for their user names and passwords or ID no to prove their identity over the internet. After authentication, authorization is done to find out that if the person is permitted to have access to the resource application or not. And finally through access control, users are granted or denied access to particular resources. The access may be granted or denied on different criterions so that fraudulent activities can be controlled.

These procedures are extremely important from the security point of view through which unauthorized access, theft and fraud can be controlled as discussed previously in the area of web security and privacy (Benantar 2005). Proxy Servers This term is very common when we talk about web and the internet. A server refers to any computer system or application program and a proxy server fulfils the request of its user by connecting to other servers. For example, if a user wants to access a file available on another server then proxy server allows the user to access the file by connecting to that server.

This function is extremely important because without it the users won’t be able to access all the URL’s through their own server and the role of internet will remain limited. Thus proxy servers are extremely important when using internet technology whose benefits cannot be realized completely without the former (Luotonen 1997). Software Agents Internet technology has also led to the advent and popularity of software agents which is actually program acting for the user or other program on behalf of an agency.

The important part is that software agents act themselves in deciding what the next task to do is. Software agents are basically used to solve the problems in the use of internet and information technology like information overload. They act on behalf of their user with certain degree of authority and freedom in order to accomplish the task for their user. Agents have autonomy, persistence and decision making ability due to which they act on themselves for completing the next assigned task. Different types of agents include intelligent agents, autonomous agents, mobile agents etc (Bradshaw 1997).

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