How to mitigate e-commerce security threats & risks

Due to the global pandemic, the consumer economy shifted online at an exponential rate. 

Therefore, it’s no “surprise” that protecting e-commerce security is now on the top of retailers’ to-do lists in order to run a successful online brand. 

A secure online storefront not only boasts an increase in sales but also builds a positive rapport with customers. Therefore, to better equip your business on the risks of e-commerce, Intelicle is breaking down looming cybersecurity threats that are holding you back from a dynamic, lucrative and secure future.

The raging pandemic has forced retailers to lock down their eCommerce security systems

Threat: Hackers are getting smarter 

Hackers are rising in numbers and continuously setting up traps for businesses with phishing, ransomware, and other attacks. In fact, a recent US report released by the FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) examined a spike in cybercrimes by 400%. Truth be told, retrieving stolen data can cost you $200,000 if it gets into the wrong hands. 

With extensive knowledge of the types of social engineering techniques available in the digital sphere. It gives cybercriminals enough leverage to penetrate eCommerce security networks and exploit innocent individuals into unwittingly providing sensitive information, i.e., logins and passwords. As of January 2021, Google registered a staggering 2, 145,013 different phishing sites.  

While many tried to adapt to work from home, “ the new normal”, the hacker community has multiplied overnight. Taking advantage of these unprecedented times to spam our email feeds using common phishing techniques including links to “register” for the COVID-19 vaccine. Similarly, targeting popular apps like Zoom to harvest user credentials using spoofed attachment links. Easily fooling recipients into disclosing pertinent personal or work information. Which not only jeopardies your security but also gives them full access to unauthorized company information, yikes

Threat: DDoS attacks are an expensive nightmare

Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS), at large is a malicious risk and detrimental to e-commerce businesses. It disrupts web traffic causing sites to crash. Inevitably, it sets you up for doom if you don’t have a clear game plan to tackle eCommerce security issues.

4 tips for DDoS attack prevention:

  1. Change URLs
  2. Install IP blocking plugin (i.e. Wordfence)
  3. Conduct a network vulnerability assessment
  4. Adopt cloud-based service providers

Start with educating your workforce on the proper response strategies to adhere to in case of a DDoS attack. Which, in the long run, will save you significant revenue losses. 

Ransomware threats are surging in frequency

Another common threat eCommerce businesses face is Ransomware. Attackers use third-party software to gain access and encrypt your hosting systems. It could be disastrous for your retail enterprise.

In March 2021, renowned PC manufacturer Acer paid $50,000,000 in Monero cryptocurrency, possibly the highest recorded ransom demand.

Despite the high-risk outcomes threatening eCommerce security, there are actions that businesses can take to stay vigilant on the proper cybersecurity practices, including:

  • Regular offline backups
  • Audit websites and apps
  • Execute a data theft-prevention strategy
  • Conduct penetration testing to identify weaknesses in enterprise networks
  • Enable multi-factor authentication 

Threat: Omnichannel Marketing

The risks of omnichannel marketing outweigh its advantages, and retailers need to find a structural balance. It’s an integrated e-commerce security ecosystem for today’s shoppers. Undoubtedly, a phenomenal marketing resource, but it also presents multiple layers of risks for e-commerce businesses. Omnichannel marketing offers multiple touch points that give hackers access to intercept communication between customers and retail outlets.

Threat: Unprotected VPN servers

The pandemic created an increased dependency for VPN services as companies try to navigate remote login, which has been somewhat of a challenge. VPN networks are meant to provide a secure and safe online communications channel. But with employees connected to their home networks and Wi-Fi routers, there isn’t room for adequate security. Which, in short, is putting your eCommerce security in harm’s way. Ultimately, a nightmare for retailers but a win-win scenario for cybercriminals.   

The best way to approach this is to provide VPN services to employees capable of being entrusted with crucial and sensitive information. By strategizing how your e-commerce businesses can be better protected from external threats and losing data from unauthorized transfers.

To Sum Up,

In the path to identify the areas your e-commerce business needs support, use appropriate measures and consumers’ evolving patterns to achieve cybersecurity excellence. With technology getting smarter every day and feeding off human errors, now is not the time to stay idle and potentially expose valuable customer or website data. 

Things to consider:

  • Look into the vulnerabilities eating away your eCommerce security while understanding the impact of a data breach from an economic standpoint – such as expensive litigations or expensive fines. 
  • Have your team create a cyber strategy that compliments your business model. 
  • Invest in automated eCommerce security approaches that analyse your web traffic, infrastructure, and assets seamlessly.
  • Train your staff better. Educate them on the best cybersecurity practices, the cost of non-compliance, and updated company data policies

Developing good e-commerce security habits is vital for business growth — and marginally minimises time spent on monitoring and maintenance. 

Consumers are looking to invest in safe online experiences they can trust.

If you invest as much effort into scaling risks of e-commerce as rigorously as marketing web or design, then you’ve won half the battle.

“If you’re proactive, you focus on preparing. If you’re reactive, you end up focusing on repairing.”

-John C Maxwell

If you would like to speak to one of our e-commerce security experts, drop us a note at info@intelicle.com. We’ll give you a free assessment on how we can help you – conquer the e-commerce landscape – with the best cybersecurity practices – and build memorable customer journeys.   

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