Businesses worldwide are rapidly moving online. Excluding China, there are around 3 million e-commerce websites in the world. In the USA alone, there are about 1.3 million.
It’s evident that in the modern world, many customers prefer shopping via e-commerce. In fact, 83% of US customers have made a purchase on Amazon in the last seven months. That’s over 200 million people, only on Amazon.
With so many users, an E-commerce website is a perfect platform for cyber-criminals to attack. Criminals can attack payment gateways, cause identity theft, make purchases with your login credentials, and result in a grave data breach. That is why E-commerce companies need to think about the threat of cyber-crime very seriously.
So how can you achieve security for your website? Read to know how you can secure your E-commerce website from potential cyber-attacks:
PCI Regulatory Compliance
According to US law, all E-commerce websites that use and store customer details like debit cards and credit cards data must comply with the PCI Security Standards.
It is done to prevent and ward off malicious attacks aimed at payment gateways of e-commerce sites, prevent data fraud, and bolster online payment card data security. Apart from attracting fines, non-compliance also endangers your portal and makes it vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
Install SSL Certification
Linking your E-commerce website to an SSL certification results in superior security, data integrity, and data protection of your website.
These certifications are a quite simple and inexpensive way to ensure the protection of your website, as well as the confidentiality of customer details.
You could check out and buy Cheap SSL certificates from cheapsslshop.com, which sells some of the best certifications at low rates.
Apart from ensuring 100% data security, an SSL certification also increases customer trust, reliability, and provides you enhanced data encryption so that sensitive data is never compromised.
Use a Firewall
Using a firewall for your E-commerce website is another excellent way to prevent attacks. Using a firewall, you can establish a barrier between your trusted network (E-commerce site) and an untrusted network (the internet).
A firewall can provide you security against worms, Trojan horses, email attacks, phishing, and malware attacks. Although it may not always provide 100% security, it will at least alert you in case of any suspicious or malicious activity on your network, so that you can take reactionary measures.
For it to work up to its full potential, firewalls must be regularly updated to the latest version available.
According to the 2014 US state of the cyber-crime survey, it was found that 42% of respondents stated that proper training of employees helped ward off cyber-attacks. Also, companies that invested in security training of employees incurred a loss of $162,000, compared to $683,000 in case of those that did not.
If statistics and common opinions are anything to go by, this is clearly an essential subject. Employees should be trained on necessary security measures like not opening suspicious emails, identifying spam emails, and recognizing phishing attacks.
In today’s world of increasing cyber-threats, employees should be trained to do much better than simply use strong passwords. Ideally, employee training should always also include disaster management training and adherence to strict security protocol.
Set-Up Strong Passwords
Simply using strong passwords may not be able to stop a skilled hacker, but it may buy you precious time to alert your team and stall the attempt.
That’s why, a password should be one that’s difficult to hit upon since, for a hacker, it’s nothing more than a trial-and-error process. The more complicated you make your password, the more difficult it becomes for the criminals to break into your site.
Typically, a combination of letters, symbols, and numbers should be used, whereby the probability of correctly guessing the password becomes exponentially difficult. It may be challenging to remember, and thus, even harder to emulate.
Install an IDS
An IDS is an intrusion detection system, which can be used to bolster your E-commerce website by linking the two. An IDS is a software application, which essentially scans your network thoroughly, and checks for any potential areas of a data breach, or existing data breaches, so that corrective actions might be taken.
Any malicious activity or violation of policy and rules are immediately conveyed to the administrator, who can then take steps to reverse the same.
In stark contrast to the firewall, an IDS looks for any potential compromise from within the system, while firewalls look to counter external threats.
The detection can take place at either the host environment or your own network.
There are multiple IDS available online that can be used to beef up security.
Get Rid of Unnecessary Data
Storing personal data and details of customers is an invitation to hackers to target you. According to the PCI rules, no billing information or card details should be stored on the website, and these must be regularly deleted.
The only data E-commerce companies can store is something as basic as “the refund process”.
Storing any other data is in contravention of PCI standards, which, apart from landing you in legal trouble, could also mean the compromise of the personal details of thousands of your trusted customers.
Trademark Company Name
It is a critical step towards securing your website, domains, and subdomains. Trademarking your website name and logo ensure that criminals do not create a website like yours and use your name and goodwill to target your customers. Ultimately, this may cause a serious breach of data, trust, and law, compromising the details of millions of unsuspecting customers.
It is a legal procedure, beyond the scope of a simple online search, but one that is intricately linked to the cyber-security of your E-commerce website.
Trademarking means you now have the full force of the law on your side, and no one can get away by emulating you or using your name for malicious intent.
Data security is the buzzword in the world today. With a massive number of customers now turning to E-commerce because of the ease of use and variety it provides, the scope for cyber-attacks is also increasing in magnitude.
Proper precautions need to be in place for an imminent attack, and you must be ready for all possibilities. After all, you can never be too careful.
Ali Salman is an online marketing strategist who have worked with Coca-Cola, Extreme Pita, Mucho Burrito, KIA, Honda and other Fortune 500 companies. Ali Salman now heads Rapid Boost Marketing - Canada's fastest growing search marketing agency. RBM clients include Fortune 500's and medium size businesses across North America. Ali as RBM CMO leads his team in building and managing quality, high-performing and cost-effective interactive campaigns and programs for our company's customers and partners. In his career, he has significantly improved campaign performance for large brands such as Government of Alberta, Liberal Party, Workopolis, Cathay Pacific, as well as medium to large retailers and high-tech B2B-enterprise niches.
Ali and his team develop online promotional concepts that spark viral growth through search and social media for RBM clients, devising strategies that use search engines and more to reach key demographic segments in the ways they're most likely to be receptive. Ali Salman also oversees corporate marketing initiatives for Rapid Boost Marketing, including strategic communications counsel, public and analyst relations and client education programming.