Given the meteoric growth of online business, starting an online business and building an eCommerce website can be challenging and exciting. However, many entrepreneurs take the security of their eCommerce website for granted, and barely take any measures to ensure they are protected against attacks from a variety of hackers. This is shortsightedness on the part of these business owners.
Nevertheless, many preventive measures today can help you protect your website, and anyone with little knowledge of the computer can implement them.
What is eCommerce security?
Security is, or should be, the most important aspect of an eCommerce website. Those who don’t ensure effective security are constantly at risk of fraud or identity theft. For example, leaked credit card details can seriously undermine your accounts, which could lead to enormous loss for your business.
The small size of your business should not make you think it’s safe. The fact is, small businesses are prone to being attacked more frequently than larger ones. And hackers believe that eCommerce websites are not properly secured—and rightly so.
Research shows that small eCommerce websites are under constant threat. As well as actual, financial scam, breaks in security or data put a dent to your brand’s credibility. Which implies that if money is not spent to secure a website, your customers will not feel safe spending with you. And once a security breach occurs, you will not be able to have return customers, leave alone getting new ones. Therefore, eCommerce is all about ensuring both your business and your customers can feel safe.
Today, website security is not a costly affair that only companies with large IT departments can do; even a small company, or individuals, on a shoestring budget can easily ensure the security of their websites. ECommerce specialists generally highlight the following fundamental and most important eCommerce website security features for successfully running an eCommerce enterprise, large or small.
1. Use SSL certificate and ensure it’s PCI compliant
An SSL, an effective way to keep your customer data secured, is a digital certificate that encodes information sent between a web server and web browser. It also prompts customers that your website is secure enough to give their credit card data.
PCI compliance is a security need created by key credit card brands in a bid to decrease scam and elevate eCommerce website security.
2. Use a real-time bot detection technology
Although everyone wants more traffic to their site in order to get more conversions, not all internet traffic is genuine or credible. Bots embody over 50pc of all website traffic, and bad bots represent 30pc for eCommerce website scams. What you might think is an incursion of authentic traffic, could truly be malevolent bots run by your opponents or swindlers to steal your whole product collection, customer or vendor data in just a few seconds.
The effect on an eCommerce business can be significant in terms of affected website security, miserable sales and lost prospects. Moreover, automated methods that continually scan commerce sites for pricing data are likely to hit several pages and utilize server resources.
3. Take advantage of a web application firewall
A web application firewall (WAF) is a hardware or software system that basically works as a doorway between two or more networks, allowing authorized traffic and stalling unauthorized or possibly malicious traffic from accessing a network.
Usually, WAF guards websites from well-known attacks such as cross-site scripting (XSS), SQL injections and DDos attacks.
But for a firewall to be effective, it should be properly configured.
4. Choose a Secure Ecommerce Platform
Carry out extensive research before selecting a specific eCommerce platform. It’s recommended that an eCommerce platform should be based on an object-centric programming language with particular built-in security procedures. In case you choose to use WordPress as your platform, opt for a WordPress security plugin that will add an additional level of security to your site. Keep in mind that from a website security viewpoint, eCommerce platforms do not provide with a bot mitigation solution, an important ingredient for eCommerce websites.
5. Formulate a method to purge customer data
The most effective way to ensure that your data is not susceptible to cybercriminals is simply to not keep that data around. Do away of old customer data on a consistent basis. Then, only keep the required data to track packages, issue refunds and credits, and to chargeback accounts. You will need to hold names, addresses, and emails for marketing objectives, but you must think carefully about what information you keep saving and what is the purpose of that exercise.
6. Urge customers to use strong passwords
If a customer’s information gets hacked, they are not going to care that their lack of omission might have made matters worse. What will be of concern to them is that their information was compromised and that they lost money in the process. It’s important that you set up stern password rules that compel customers to use capital letters, special characters, and to have long passwords.
7. Educate your employees about online security
Much of the scam happens due to human error. Your customer support representative may divulge an account number during a live support chat or on social media. Another might give a login and password over the phone to somebody who claims to have forgotten theirs. All this can be evaded by formulating strict policies pertaining to privacy and security, training employees in these policies, and providing regular refresher courses.
These important eCommerce website security measures can help online businesses to efficiently build their customers’ credibility and their own company’s reputation.