The Ultimate Guide to Online Safety for eCommerce Business Owners
- eCommerce

The Ultimate Guide to Online Safety for eCommerce Business Owners

The internet and technology are an integral part of a business’s day-to-day processes in today’s digital world. However, as companies spend more time and store more information online, it leaves them vulnerable to cyber-attacks, which is why cybersecurity should be at the forefront of every business’s continuity plan.

Hackers and the techniques they use are constantly evolving, becoming more advanced and destructive with each attack. Unfortunately, the primary target for cyber-attacks has remained the same throughout the years: e-commerce businesses. Holding your business to ransom, compromising customer data to be sold, leaking trade secrets, and destroying customer trust; are all ways a cyber-attack can affect your business and cause even the most profitable companies a crisis. With all this in mind, companies must develop their security to protect their business and customers and reduce the risk of a data breach taking a considerable chunk out of the budget. Our ultimate guide will cover what cybersecurity is and how an e-commerce business can stay safe online.

Cybersecurity

Since the pandemic, there has been a surge in remote working, and now most interactions that many employees have with colleagues are through the internet. This has many cost-effective benefits for businesses, but there are risks if precautions aren’t taken. Many companies did not equip to set up remote working so quickly. As a result, customer, employee, and business data are stored on remote working staff home networks, making them much more vulnerable to a cyber-attack. Employees adopting their spare rooms, living spaces, and kitchens as offices are the prime targets for cyber-attackers in 2021.

As more businesses rely on the internet for their daily processes, the risks from cyber-attacks rise, which is why many companies are ensuring they are well protected against allowing attackers the opportunity to take advantage. Cybersecurity is the method of counteracting any potential threats to a business by protecting your computers and putting recovery systems in place to be enacted in the case of an attempted attack. It is imperative to protect your business data from theft and damage while protecting your networks, computers, and devices with recovery systems. Maintain a strong firewall across all company property and have a skilled IT team in place to launch a defense against any imminent threats.

Secure Platform

Creating a successful e-commerce business is more than listing your products on a website; you need to implement strategic planning in the same way as if you were running a retail store in a mall. However, with e-commerce, you can automate and streamline many processes that would typically require human intervention.

When you’re building your e-commerce business, you need a platform to sell your goods on that you can trust. Having a platform that offers security to your business and your customers is essential to becoming a successful e-commerce company.

Security Breaches

When your networks are left unsecured, your business could be targeted by cyber-attacks, potentially disastrous for your business; affecting your reputations, bank balance, and continuity.

Customers are likely to lose all trust in your business and your ability to keep their information safe if their data has been compromised. Losing the trust of your customers can lead to a loss of business as many customers will begin dealing with your competitors instead. As a result of this loss of business, your company revenues will be down.

Hackers don’t discriminate on what type of data they are willing to steal; this could be customer data, employee data, business plans, or intellectual property. Businesses find it extremely difficult to recover from cyber attacks, especially when it comes to intellectual property. When an idea is stolen after development, not only are you losing the time and money that went into the development, but the potential income the idea would have brought the company.

Data is not all you lose to hackers, as it’s more than likely following an attack that your company will suffer financially. In some cases, cyber-attackers will hold your business information until a fee is paid to release it, which is typically a substantial amount. Often in these situations, once the ransom is paid, the information is not returned to the company. Without access to the data, many companies are left paralyzed; this results in a loss of money from both the cyber-attack and being unable to operate.

Phishing Emails

Phishing emails are a type of cyber-attack that uses mass-mailing to trick people into clicking on a link infected with a virus, spyware, or other malware. Phishing emails can also direct the unsuspecting user to reveal private information to the hackers when entering a fake website. Many companies have the training to help their employees spot phishing emails, but it’s also crucial to know what to do if you click on a phishing link, and Inspired eLearning can help with their comprehensive guide.

Ransomware

Ransomware has become a prevalent form of cyber-attack against businesses. The victim of a ransomware attack typically receives an email with malware attached; once they open the email, the malware infects the system to encrypt or lockout data. As a result, a company cannot gain access to their essential files until they pay the ransom that the cyber-attacker demands.

Malicious Bots

Malicious bots are a relatively new self-propagating type of malware that has been developed to perform specific tasks. A bot will scan a website for security vulnerabilities and will then perform fraudulent activities or report the vulnerabilities to the hacker in control, usually referred to as the ‘botmaster.’ Following an attack, a business’s server infrastructure can be overloaded and severely damaged; the cost the fix this can be prohibitive, especially for smaller companies. In addition, bots are challenging to distinguish from regular human activity on websites, especially as the most recent generation has been endowed with human-like interactions and characteristics that can accurately mimic a real visitor’s behavior. This is why protection against bots should be an integral part of your security plan.

The Ultimate Guide to Online Safety for eCommerce Business Owners

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