The number of cyber-attacks is fast escalating, and it is bound to get even worse in the coming years. Well, cyberspace is now a place where major election duels fight (we have seen this with the Cambridge Analytica-Facebook saga), and this is why this a space that shouldn’t underestimate if you are running an e-commerce business. Yes, that’s right. If data breach stats are anything to go by, then data security is expected to more important in the coming years. Juniper Research predicts that the average cost of a data breach surpasses $150 Million by 2020 which will be a four-fold increase from 2015.
This may be scary, that is why every business owner should take necessary steps for privacy and security of their e-commerce site. This is what this article is all about. We will be telling you some of the simple techniques to stay on top of your e-commerce security.
Update or Upgrade Your Out-dated CMS
First of all, you should look at out-dated content management system (CMS) that is used in your site, which can present security loopholes can be exploited by attackers. Thus it is always good to keep your software up to date.
New update fix common problems bugs, coding errors, and incompatible plugins. Even you will get new feature and enhanced functionality of CMS system to run your E-commerce site. Always choose top trending CMS platforms like Prestashop, WooCommerce, Shopify etc. If you are using other CMS platform that ought to also be up to date include things like Antivirus, your operating systems etc.
Use SSL encrypted Connection for an e-commerce site
The best way to start is to use SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) to establish encrypted connection between your site (a web server) and online visitor ( a web browser) through proper authentication and encryption. It is simple; you can secure your site’s connection by installing SSL certificate on your server. In other words, you will minimize the chances of having eavesdroppers or intercept important data as it flows to and from the server side to the consumer.
There are different types of SSL certificate to pick such as Domain validation (DV) SSL, Organization validation (OV) SSL, Extended Validation (EV), Wildcard SSL, Multi-domain SSL, Code Signing certificate etc. You choose one depending on the level of security features you require.
Ideally, You can find cheap EV SSL certificate with help of discount code for your e-commerce site that proves site’s organizational identity and displays green address bar and Organization name in browser address bar to ensure highest security from potential online threats. If you are running multiple sub-domains on main domain then Multi Domain EV SSL certificate is best for E-commerce website security.
Use A Secure CMS and Any Third Party Integration
Talking about CMS platform, it is also smart to use a platform that is known for delivering secure e-commerce services. In other words, you are better off building your e-commerce business using seasoned E-commerce systems instead of those that are pretty raw in the field. Moreover, you should be very cautious when picking provider to partner with for other business solutions. As a rule of the thumb, you should make sure that any third party service provider that handles your sensitive data has implemented the right security standards that protect the data.
Train Your Employees on Security
Employees can also be the difference between you having a secure business or not. In fact, attackers normally take advantage of the lack of know-how by employees to execute attacks like phishing. Let’s say; it doesn’t matter how much cash you spend on the technical aspect of preventing attacks as it can all be brought down by a simple human error. You can tell your employees about online threats in a bid to teach a security culture in your business.
Avoid Storing Sensitive Data
E-commerce businesses handle different types of data, and it might be a good thing to store the data for data analysis, but it can also be a blessing in disguise. If there is a breach, then it can be detrimental on your side. That is why, you should refrain from storing sensitive data like credit card numbers, expiration dates, and CVV2 [card verification value] codes.
Use Strong Passwords
Many at times it is pretty easy for attackers to penetrate systems through easy to guess passwords.
A simple attack like brute force attack can allow an attacker access to your system if you or your users are using simple passwords. To prevent this, always use and make it a policy for users to only use strong passwords for authentication to make it harder for cybercriminals to breach your site from the front end.
Use Two-Factor Authentication
Still, on authentication, it is not just enough to use email-password combinations to authenticate entry into your e-commerce systems. You should add another layer of security perhaps verification via SMS code to customers and even employees looking to access sensitive systems. If you practice Two-factor authentication or 2FA, for your site, then there will lower the chances of you falling for identity theft or phishing via mail.
Set Up Security Alerts
It is also vital that you set up system alerts on any malicious activity targeted at your systems. You will be warned about suspicious login attempts not to mentions suspicious transactions coming your way. You can also set up notification alerts for users who try to make orders using different credit cards, phone numbers or even those orders whose recipient details don’t match with the card used.
Keep Monitoring Your E-commerce Site
It is also advisable to keep an eye on your site from time to time. The only way you can get to know how users are interacting with your site and discover any malice if any. The beauty is that there are some marvelous tools around that can help you monitor your site in real time including some free ones like Google Analytic which will give you some important metrics about your users that you can use for security purposes. You should also ensure that your hosting provider is doing the same on their side-a good hosting provider should provide frequent scanning, detection, and removal of malware and viruses on the server side.
Backup Your Systems and Databases
It has been said a million times and we will repeat it, again! Always backup your systems so that you have a place to fall back to in case of an attack. You can do both online and offline backups of important data while you should also ensure that your hosting provider is backing up as a well-a good hosting provider should have a proper disaster recovery plan.
In a nutshell, protecting your e-commerce business is more of a necessity than a choice in a world where attacks are growing at an alarming rate. Don’t let offense catch you off guard, why not protect your e-commerce business with these simple security strategies?