A security breach is not a rare occurrence anymore. Every day there are so many incidences of hacking, phishing, and virus attacks. It is intriguing to know how much data is lost due to such cyber-attacks. Carrying out business online has become daunting because of these security issues. These security issues largely dictate the way you do business online. This is because every business collects user data in one way or another and it is your responsibility to protect this data.
E-commerce businesses are huge storehouses of customer information, so it becomes absolutely crucial for them to protect this data.
Let’s learn the top ways e-commerce businesses can protect customer data:
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1Your website should be secure:
The most important thing is to ensure the security of your website with the help of SSL Certificate. All your pages, especially the checkout pages and payment gateways should be secure and assure user of customers that site is secure with HTTPS connection, which ehance credibility and trust to your site. Even you show your organization name with green padlock icon next to the website’s URL in address field of web browser by installing CA trusted Extended Validation (EV) SSL certificate. So, you can obtain Cheap EV SSL certificate from authorized reseller for your e-commerce website that verifies the user identity and encrypts the information shared between the server and browser.
Moreover, don’t forget to get the security measures updated on your website at regular intervals. Stay aligned with security patches as outdated applications and software programs are more susceptible to cybercrimes. Hackers can crawl your website with the help of a software and get an idea about the systems or websites that are inadequately protected.
Apart from this, recognize any suspicious software program and remove it as soon as possible. You should make your website PCI compliant for secure transactions and higher chances of conversions.
2Make sure you ask for only the important data
Collect relevant information only. More often than not, e-commerce websites ask for too much of information in the greed of using it in the future and building a huge database. However, it is not recommended to store so much data as it puts you at a risk of losing data. This could hurt the reputation of your brand in the days to come. Do not store sensitive customer data as it is prohibited according to the PCI standards. You can prune the data and save the active customers only. It is prudent to have minimum data that is necessary for cash backs and refund policy.
3Get notifications for suspicious Activity
Set up system notifications for doubtful activity such as several orders from one account through separate credit cards, phone numbers from regions drastically different from the billing address, and orders with different cardholder and recipient names. You can also set up alerts for suspicious transactions taking place from a single IP address.
4Layered security is a good idea
Firewalls work as a layered security and help to stop the hackers from gaining access to confidential information. Use extra layers of security for your contact forms, login boxes, search queries etc. You can even have two-factor authentication on your website that will make your customer experience smoother and safer. This will help the customer to stay away from fake apps and websites that put customer information at risk.
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5Train your employees regarding the importance of security
Your employees should be aware of the fact that they do not own the customer information. They just have it on loan from the customers. Keeping this in mind, they should avoid sending any message that reveals personal information of the customers. Even chat sessions should not contain this information as these communication channels are not secure.
Employees should know the laws and policies that work in favor of customer data.
Quick Tip: With GDPR coming into force from 25th May 2018, e-commerce websites (especially dealing with EU) will have to be extra careful in managing their data. Have written documents that specify the data usage policy clearly and adhere to these guidelines for better security.
6A tracking number is a must for every order
If you do not assign a tracking number for your orders, you may have to encounter a chargeback fraud. To make sure that you do not get in any such trouble, e-commerce websites especially retailers who drop ship should certainly follow this practice.
7Monitor your website daily
Use a real-time analytics tool so that you can keep a close eye on how your website visitors are using your website and browsing through it. This will enable quick detection of suspicious behavior or fraud. It is even possible to get notifications on mobile devices whenever a suspicious activity is noticed on the website. This results in preventing any data loss and quick execution of the data protection strategy.
Quick Tip: Your e-commerce website should be on a platform using a reliable object-oriented programming language. Your admin panel should not be accessible to the hackers or public facing servers.
8Execute an address and card verification system
Ask for the card verification value from the customers for safe transactions and implement an address verification system. Doing so will mitigate the risk of fraudulent transactions.
9Mandate the use of strong passwords
Your customers can keep their information safe by using a password that is difficult to guess. Mandate the use of strong passwords with characters, numbers, and symbols. Having complex login will prevent any hacking attacks from the front-end.
10Stay informed about the access you have given
It is quite likely that the hacking attempt is made by your company employees and insiders who have worked closely with your system. Make sure you have only reliable people on board and be wary of the access you have given to individuals working at your ecommerce store.
There has been an astronomical rise in the number of cyber threats faced by shopping websites in the last few years. As a result, implementing security measures such as HTTPS, SSL Certificate, PCI DSS is the need of the hour.
In a nutshell, you should not take your customer information lightly and constantly get your website backed up so that any inadvertent hacking incident can be taken care of.
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