PandemicCOVID-19 has forced people to rethink their shopping habits. Online shopping is all the rage, but there are also concerns about the safety of e-commerce sites .
By 2020, 2.05 billion people will have shopped online. Since most people who live online contribute to social distancing, this number is increasing every day.
Therefore, as an ecommerce site administrator, you need to keep your site’s security at an optimal level to conquer the huge online market.
But with cyber attacks becoming more common, how can you install a solid security system?
Before discussing the solution, it is important to understand what is meant by e-commerce security.
How secure are e-commerce sites?
Ecommerce site security refers to the security measures an ecommerce site operator takes to protect its site and its customers from cyber attacks.
This includes the implementation of secure protocols such as SSL/TLS certificates, PCI/DSS compliance, firewalls, DDoS, ISO compliance and multi-factor/2-factor authentication on the website.
These security protocols deter cybercriminals by securing payment methods, enabling encrypted data transfers and preventing malware, spyware and ransomware attacks.
E-commerce site security is no longer an extra layer of protection you can voluntarily add; instead, in today’s world, it is a necessity.
Why do cybercriminals target e-commerce sites?
Site data, bank details, credit/debit card details, usernames, passwords, addresses and purchase history are available on the e-commerce site.
In the event of a hack, a hacker could gain access to sensitive customer data and the website.
CMS is another security issue ine-commerce. Most websites running on an outdated CMS become vulnerable to fraudulent attacks.
Hackers can easily break in there and steal customer data, which can then be sold on the dark web.
Hackers can obtain millions of dollars worth of information by breaking into a single e-commerce site, which is why they choose to engage in such malicious activity.
General security risks for e-commerce sites
- Malware, spyware and ransomware attacks
Trojans, viruses, bugs, spyware and ransomware are all part of malware.
They can block access to your website, steal your confidential data and format your website.
Malware can infect your website through unintended downloads from unknown sources.
Sometimes attackers also block access to websites and demand a ransom to unblock them.
In these cases, the site owner can get them back, but loses his customer base and his reputation in the marketplace. These attacks are called ransomware.
- DDoS attacks
A DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack is a continuous bombardment of requests to a server that eventually brings it down.
In this type of attack, attackers send unordered traffic from different sources to the web server, slowing it down and preventing customers from accessing it.
This leads to a loss of reputation and customer confidence. Cybercriminals use these attacks to compromise websites or even demand a ransom in exchange for stopping the attack.
A DDoS attack can cause a well-known e-commerce site to lose its entire customer base within hours.
- Brute force hacking
This is another way for hackers to gain access to a website. Brute-force attacks consist of using different combinations of passwords to break into the system.
We therefore recommend that you use a secure password consisting of a combination of numbers and letters.
Hackers use software to generate password combinations and apply them to your website.
If your password is weak, the process becomes easier for hackers. They can manipulate your data, steal your customer information and harass you in any way possible.
- Zero attack
Software developers are working hard to eliminate the shortcomings of CMS or website software.
If they find a bug, they report it and fix it by releasing a patch that ships in software updates on all platforms.
However, sometimes attackers find problems before developers do, leading to exploitation.
Cybercriminals use the vulnerabilities to compromise websites and steal sensitive customer information and website data.
Zero-day attacks are common in medium-sized CMS systems that do not have dedicated teams to monitor their performance and resolve issues in a timely manner.
- Customer error
Sometimes customers use weak passwords to protect their data and when they are hacked, they blame the website operators.
Even though it doesn’t directly affect the website, it can affect your reputation in the marketplace.
Hackers can inadvertently trick a customer into making a purchase and leave them and your website in the lurch.
To avoid this, you should give your customers a special warning in the terms and conditions, so they can’t sue you.
The fault on their part is not your responsibility and you should not consider it as such.
Tips for securing your e-commerce site
- Manage user permissions carefully
Giving every user access to confidential corporate accounts is not a wise approach for a company.
It is very important to identify and enforce the boundaries of each employee in your organization.
Even if you trust your employees completely, it’s not a good idea to give them access to your accounts.
Example: If a hacker breaks into an employee’s account that is linked to the CEO’s account, he now has access to the entire company.
In fact, most employees don’t even need this access. Identify key people who need access and restrict them based on the principle of least privilege.
- The commodity code must be.
One of the biggest security threats in the e-commerce sector is website cloning. Let’s illustrate this with an example.
Suppose you have an e-commerce site; a hacker scans your site and creates a similar site with the same name as yours.
You can redirect traffic to your website and make customers think they are you. Therefore, registering the trademark of your website is of utmost importance.
By mentioning your brand and your products on your website, you can avoid such atrocities.
- Use of known e-commerce platform.
If the e-commerce platform hosts your store, you don’t have the right to walk away from its security, trust and longevity measures.
Once the store is set up, you can’t easily switch to another host because you can’t switch to other platforms. Therefore, we recommend you to choose a genuine and reliable platform. Cheap wildcard SSL certificates are available for e-commerce platforms, but choosing the right one is not an easy task.
Shopify, BigCommerce and Wix are among the best. They have a good reputation in the market and have experience hosting many businesses.
- Software update site.
CMS systems like WordPress and Joomla regularly release security patches to ensure their customers don’t fall into the clutches of hackers.
However, many people find installing security patches time-consuming and undignified.
Such people are like the ripe fruit that hackers want to attack first.
Hackers even install web crawlers that can scan websites with outdated security patches.
They target them with malware, spyware, ransomware. They then send phishing emails to customers of the website and redirect them to malicious websites.
So never ignore the latest security patches, as they will determine whether or not you become a new hacking target.
- Encryption of data and communication
Creating a secure website is not enough to keep cybercriminals at bay. You must also protect the communication between you (the client) and the server.
The only way to protect them is to install an SSL certificate on your website.
SSL or Secure Socket Layer is a security technology used to encrypt communication between the server and the client.
It identifies, authenticates and verifies the connection between the two organizations and broadcasts it over the secure network.
It protects data with cryptographic features such as asymmetric and symmetric cryptography that allows the use of public, private and session keys.
However, using standard SSL for a single domain is not enough if you need to secure multiple sub-domains at top level. You need an SSL certificate with a wildcard.
Wildcard SSL Certificates can only protect the primary domain and its subdomains. It provides the same level of protection for all areas.
Wildcard SSL is easy to manage as all domains are grouped in one dashboard.
Some sites also offer an expiration date of up to 5 years, meaning you don’t have to worry about renewing your contract every year.
An SSL certificate also enables HTTPS encryption, which makes the site more secure for your customers.
This increases customer confidence and Google does not hesitate to place such a page at the top of the SERPs.
The importance of securing electronic commerce has increased a thousandfold compared to COVID-19.
Companies that want to succeed in today’s world must adhere to all of the above. They should always be at the forefront of technology.
With cybercrime on the rise, it is important to equip your e-commerce site with robust security technologies such as SSL/TLS certificates, firewalls and virus protection.
Don’t give full access to your accounts to people who don’t need it.
Ensure that business operations are aligned with the latest security trends.
These items will help you stay away from malicious elements and protect your website.
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