Is Your Online Store Secure? Learn How to Protect Your Business
Starting an online business can be an exciting but also a heavily stressful undertaking. There’s a lot of work that goes into setting up an e-commerce business, with complicated organizational aspects to work through. So it’s easy to let a few important things, like web security, slide. Check out these tips and learn how to keep an online business protected.
Everyone knows how vital cybersecurity is, especially for a business that operates entirely online. It isn’t always that easy, however, to know what steps to take to ensure the business stays safe. Avoiding even the most basic security steps will not only put a company at risk but put their customers in danger as well.
Customers put their trust in an e-commerce store to protect their sensitive data. If business owners don’t put systems in place to protect that data, then hackers will make them sorry they didn’t. One of the biggest consequences of a data breach is the loss of reputation and trust with customers. It’s hard to recover from, that and many businesses never do.
Don’t become another statistic. Follow the guidelines below and start setting up proactive web security measures to keep cybercriminals at bay.
Website Security Practices for e-commerce Stores
Make Sure the Web Host is Trustworthy
Whichever web hosting server a business owner chooses has a considerable impact on the security of the site as a whole. Shared hosting, for instance, is a popular choice for many because it’s more cost-effective. But sharing a server with other websites produces a multitude of liabilities:
- If another website owner is compromised, all of the other websites who share that server is at risk.
- There’s no way to verify how secure the server is, or contain malware once it starts to spread.
While shared hosting can be a big issue, it isn’t the only pitfall e-commerce store owners need to look out for. A web host who doesn’t take security seriously won’t put in the necessary resources to keep their clients safe. Regular security updates are essential to battle newly discovered threats, for instance.
It might cost more, but choosing a reliable web host can save store owners a lot of money and frustration down the line.
Get an SSL Certificate
Customers want to feel safe before they’ll enter their credit card details and other sensitive information into an online store. The SSL technology is the standard way websites encrypt a connection with a user’s web browser. This protects the web session from being hijacked by an outside attacker.
It’s recommended that every e-commerce store get an SSL certificate to protect their customers. Plus it provides a nice bump in Google’s search engine algorithms.
Focus On Encryption With a Business VPN
Encrypting data is one of the only secure ways to keep cyber threats at bay. A business VPN is a great option for this because it uses encryption to keep online connections safe. Much in the same way an SSL certificate does, but it doesn’t protect the customer’s connection.
Instead, it protects the network the employees use. This is just as important because hackers are smart and will try to exploit any vulnerability that gives them access to the information they want. While connected to a VPN, store owners can rest assured that any data sent over their network (via any device) is safe.
Other important encryption technologies to look into include email encryption software and password managers. These will act as a back-up in case the network is ever breached, which owners should still prepare for.
Monitor Activity and Set Up Alerts
There’s no way to guarantee that an attack won’t happen, so it’s essential to keep a close eye on site activity. Plenty of great online security monitoring tools are available that will do daily scans for any suspicious activity. Also, make sure to set up alerts – the sooner someone knows about the threat, the faster they can deal with it.
Comply With the GDPR Rules
People the world over are starting to take online privacy and safety a lot more seriously than they did years ago. Websites have to follow best security practices laid out by the GDPR to stay compliant. Or they could face heavy fines and reputational damage.
Keep Systems Updated
No matter what type of software it is, update it. App developers, website builders, web hosts, and plugin creators release updates for a reason. More often than not, these updates include important security patches that protect users against newly discovered security flaws. Software that isn’t updated in real time (or as soon as possible) is extremely vulnerable to exploitation.
It’s Time To Make Security A Priority
A Juniper report revealed that small businesses spend less than $500 a year on cybersecurity. Not everyone has the resources to splurge on enterprise-grade security tools or expensive IT experts. However, the potential loss of an attack could be a lot more costly and can cause more than just financial woes.
So it’s time for online store owners to start making security a priority now and stay one step ahead of the criminals.
We hope you enjoyed this promoted piece as much as we did!