Security challenges in eCommerce are not a new phenomenon that business owners have been struggling with for a long period of time. In recent times, hacking into websites have not been just rampant but have posed out to be a real threat for developers and site owners. Speaking in terms of recent occurrences, Ecommerce security has been compromised quite a multiple numbers of times and has directly hampered the mounting revenue that has been building up so far.
- Security concerns while using Ecommerce
- The Myth
- Important Measures to Take for Your Ecommerce Security
- Ensure SSL Certificate and PCI Compliant
- Real-Time Bot Detection Technology
- Web Application Firewall
- Choose a Secure eCommerce Platform
- Having a System for Purging Customer Data
- Use of Strong Passwords
- Train Your Employees on Online Security Vigilance
However, this has caused a significant alarm to safeguard eCommerce websites and protect the interests of the countless customers who look up to online shopping and account for the wholesome popularity of these sites.
When it comes to eCommerce websites, one of the biggest struggles is to getting the customers to the checkout page and making a real purchase happen. Compared to other websites, an eCommerce website needs an extensive amount of investment into not just putting up the site but along with the post-launch maintenances. Here, the factor of eCommerce security measures become very crucial and take things at stake since an eCommerce website not just determines the on-going costs but also needs to stay updated for the future expenses as well.
Threats imposed on eCommerce websites can be detrimental to the conversions, based upon which, the business sustains, and therefore safeguarding the site is an indirect method of retaining existing and upcoming conversions.
Security concerns while using Ecommerce
When the discussion is based upon safeguarding Ecommerce websites, the primary question that jolts up is which are the most alarming security concerns to stay protected from. Ecommerce websites are highly favorable sources for fraudsters and hackers. Speaking in a truly competitive business tone, at times, such illegal methods are deployed by competitors too to take a toll on the current success rates your website is gaining.
Here, an endless number of user IDs, personal information, prices, product catalog, financial information (inclusive of credit card details) are at pure stake along with the overall business repute of course. These vital information lures cybercriminals to exploit your weak spot and extort money illegally.
Few of the most common eCommerce threats are:
- Credit Card Fraud
- Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Attacks
- Man-in-the-middle Attacks
- Bad Bots
- Phishing Scams
Protecting eCommerce assets is popularly believed to be highly expensive and time-taking. Generally, people have this preconceived idea that, website security is a costly affair and generally manageable for big corporations or conglomerates’ IT departments.
This kind of belief makes the small players of the eCommerce domain threatened and even if they are alarmed about such threats yet they don’t feel encouraged to take a step against it due to the financial and resource constraints they have.
However, the latest developments in the cyber domain make it accessible for even the small eCommerce players to keep their sites protected without huge expenditures.
Important Measures to Take for Your Ecommerce Security
Here are seven of the most basic and chief measures that are to be taken to safeguard your site without any further delay.
Ensure SSL Certificate and PCI Compliant
An SSL is a certification for websites that encrypts information and data that has been sent between a web server and a web browser. Standing out to be one of the most effective ways of bringing data security on eCommerce websites and ensure data protection, SSL is a great option to consider. At the same time, looking at secure website customers get the confidence to grant sensitive information like debit or credit card data and automatically boosts brand credibility.
Along with the SSL certificate, PCI compliance is another must-have security requirement that is created by major credit card brands that attempt in the reduction of fraud and accelerate eCommerce businesses’ by securing the websites. PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) applies to all kinds of companies who are into processing, transmitting, and storing payment card data online.
Thus, the primary step of securing eCommerce websites is to get these two things done.
Real-Time Bot Detection Technology
One of the most basic requisites of an Ecommerce is to get maximum traffic and pushing them towards a productive buyers’ journey and getting conversions done productively. But the possible catch here is that not the entire internet traffic is legitimate and safe. Representing overall website traffic, bots account for 50% and bad bots for 30% on an eCommerce website, they are frauds hard to detect.
At times, what you consider a genuine flow of traffic onto your website can turn out to be malicious bots that are executed and run by either your competitors or fraudsters. The basic intention generally situates to scraping your product prices or snip your entire product catalog in real-time.
Various times, this becomes potentially a risky affair especially when the customer or vendor data is compromised.
Quite evidently, speaking in terms of a bad security system on an eCommerce website can hamper the business severely thereby facing critical challenges of depressed sales and lost opportunities.
Web Application Firewall
A web application firewall (WAF) is a specific type of software or hardware system that functions as a gateway between two or more than two networks. It permits authorized traffic and blocks any kind of unauthorized or seemingly malicious traffic thereby restricting it from accessing a network.
In a general sense, WAF helps in protecting websites that are susceptible to attacks which can be cross-site scripting (XSS), DDos, and SQL injections attacks. eCommerce websites receive a lot of inbound traffic and thus needs critical firewall protection to safeguard against the malicious entry. For eCommerce websites, the two most effective firewalls are application gateways and proxy firewalls.
There are two defined lines of communication with an application gateway put in place; one which goes between your computer and the proxy and the other one goes between the proxy and the destination computer or network. It kind of serves as a checkpoint at which all network information halts and acts as the middle point. The application gateways aids in hiding and protecting your network from others thereby permitting traffic that has been authorized.
These take ahead your eCommerce website security to the next level and instead of taking your network connection through all the way, with proxy firewalls, a new network connection is started. This explains that no direct connection takes place between systems which makes it difficult for attackers to find out your network and access in.
Now before you go further with the implementation of WAF for your eCommerce website, there are a few important factors to keep in mind. A firewall must be configured properly in the first place to be effectively working for you. Firewalls cannot automatically detect junk or malicious traffic; they needed to be programmed with such information. This kind of action limits the ability of firewalls to detect nasty bots that are capable of causing the majority of online frauds on eCommerce websites.
Adding to this, web application firewalls investigate packets and are capable of blocking specific IP addresses. On the other hand, WAF should be put into action with the intent to prevent mostly DDoS attacks.
Choose a Secure eCommerce Platform
Before you go ahead with the selection of a particular eCommerce platform, make sure to conduct in-depth research. It is widely recommended that an eCommerce platform should be much more based on a goal-oriented programming language with regards to built-in security protocols. If you are going ahead with WordPress as your platform, make sure that you are choosing a WordPress security plugin.
This will ensure that your website has an extra layer of protection. Speaking from a website security perspective, eCommerce platforms will never provide with bot mitigation solution. It is either the site owner’s’ or the developer’s duty to have an effective one in place for eCommerce websites.
Having a System for Purging Customer Data
Ensuring that the existential data and the future uploaded date is never vulnerable to hackers and attackers means not to have such kind of information around. Try to execute a practice of scrubbing of old customer data on a consistent and regular basis. Stick to having only the vital information and data that inevitable to be removed and needed for tracking packages, issuing refunds or credits, and charging back accounts.
At times, you might need to keep back customer data such as names, addresses, emails for various marketing purposes. However, it is vital to forecast and understand how long such information should be stored and why and ensure not compromise with any such of information in the present or in the future.
Use of Strong Passwords
In the worst of situation, if customer information is hacked into, you can never go back to them telling them about their negligence in causing such kind of an occurrence, it will boil down to one conclusion that their information compromised on your respective website. Worse, this might also delve into further atrocities where they can lose their money too while purchasing on your website. Although on an ethical level, this might seem to be quite unfair but cannot possibly reason with your customers and take ownership of protecting your website at the foremost.
To do so, make sure your website asks for a strange and strict password which includes them to use capital letters and special characters. Adding to that, make sure you strict password rules where the length of the password becomes crucial and has to be long enough which makes it tougher to be cracked by hackers.
Train Your Employees on Online Security Vigilance
Sometimes, quite undeniably this might be accepted that fraud is caused due to human errors. This can occur from if an account number is revealed on a live support chat on social media by your customer support representative or marketing vendor respectively. At times, a naïve customer ends up giving their login and password over the phone to imposters who claim to be your brand representatives. To avoid such a situation, put in place strict policies which relate to privacy and security, and training employees about these policies, and providing them with regular refresher courses.
Thus, there remains no possible shadow of doubt on how crucial it is to maintain the security norms on eCommerce websites and what stringent actions need to put into action for safeguarding the same. If you manage to stay on top of the above mentioned seven eCommerce website security measures, you will automatically open the door to enhance your online business. From creating and building effective customers’ trust, it will directly contribute to enriching the respective brand’s repute and credibility.
Thus, actively taking the initial steps to ensure a happy customer’s’ experience begins with having a strong protection system on your website. Remember, websites promote your brand all the time and for eCommerce, happy, safe, and content purchases, and their reviews create the magic for you.