Current Challenges faced by E-commerce Security
Security issues have always been the number one challenge for the e-commerce industry. Despite having a good marketing strategy and remarkable website design, your entire website, as well as your firm, can be easily ruined by a simple DDoS attack or other cyber threats. Threats to e-commerce security are rising day by day and have been compromising the data of both organizations and customers. Lately in 2019, hackers infected at least 227 e-commerce websites in a month. The damage was estimated to have cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The e-commerce industry is known to be the highest vulnerable industry in terms of cybersecurity. In fact, over 60% of the e-commerce websites lack HTTPS which doesn’t help in securing customer’s sensitive information especially the credit card number details. Without having the essential security procedures in place, the e-commerce companies are possibly at great risk of losing data of customers and ultimately their revenue.
On the other hand, the fact that hackers and cybercriminals are nowadays using sophisticated and advanced technologies to attempt cyber attacks doesn’t help either. They have found better ways to exploit security loopholes and confidential data of users from online stores.
Over the past recent years, threats to e-commerce security have made a major impact on the industry. Here is a list of major impacts on the e-commerce industry found in the cybersecurity surveys and reports of the past recent years:
Around 54% of companies have experienced successful security attacks within a year.
60% of companies are known to have their business shut down within six months of being impacted by the security attack.
In the year 2018, Server Message Blocks (SMBs) received 43% of attacks.
About 29% of the e-commerce website traffic holds the malicious intent of cyber attacks.
It was reported that e-commerce losses $660,000/hour due to cyber frauds.
25% of data breaches are mostly targeted on the payment used in e-commerce transactions.
These statistics clearly indicate the high potential for e-commerce security threats in the near future. Apart from these impacts, there are various cybersecurity threat postures that badly affect e-commerce security. Proceed further to know the top five security attacks in the e-commerce industry.
Types of Security Attacks in E-commerce
1. DDOS Attack
Distributed Denial of Service attack refers to the hampering of server, service or network traffic due to overcrowding traffic flow. The cyber threat actor seeks to make a network or machine resource unavailable for the intended users by temporarily disrupting the services of the host that is connected to the internet.
2. Credit Card Fraud
The most common and harmful security threat that e-commerce sites face is credit card fraud. In a credit card fraud, a fraudster or a thief uses the stolen card or the details from the card to make purchases that are unauthorized, in the name of the targeted user. They take advantage of stolen card information to withdraw cash using the user’s account. There are several different ways in which cybercriminals hack credit card details or attempt fraudulent activities to target credit cardholders.
3. Password Breaches
One of the biggest e-commerce security threats is the password breach in which cybercriminals hack into the databases of organizations and steal their sensitive information. The data is further exposed to the public including account numbers, names, social security numbers, and almost every personal information. According to a German research group, nearly 2.2 billion stolen emails and passwords have surfaced online for the access of cybercriminals.
4. Malware Attack
Malware attacks like ransomware hijack the targeted user’s system, web server, and all the confidential data for a time period and demand a certain amount of money in exchange for returning user’s data. Just like malware attacks, web application attack is also a serious security threat for e-commerce websites where cyber threat actors exploit the weakness and vulnerabilities to gain access to organization’s databases in order to churn their sensitive data.
Social engineering tactics like phishing are the successful attempts of tricking victims and exploiting sensitive information of users. Phishing sites, spear-phishing, and whaling are online security threats are that are initiated to target users by masquerading as a legitimate source to get user’s information. These phishing techniques not only exploit data of organizations but also exploit customer data for malicious intent.
From these e-commerce security threats, it can be concluded that attackers are majorly after:
- Stealing the sensitive data of customers online
- The exploitation of critical financial data of companies
Solutions to Prevent E-commerce Security from Threats
E-commerce is constantly growing at a fast pace, not to forget that a lot of sensitive information is present there and along with transactions taking place every day. It is crucial for companies to take extra e-commerce security. These following solutions are very effective in protecting the domain from e-commerce threats:
Check for Vulnerabilities
Every e-commerce company must comply with certain security standards that credit card companies require. Although these standards are not enough to protect everything alone. Therefore, it is important to test the health and security of e-commerce websites regularly in order to prevent hackers from attempting any real damage to the website. The regular vulnerability checking includes scanning of websites, penetration testing, and installation of application security.
Secure Sockets Layer certificate is a crucial cybersecurity measure to keep data present on the website protected from any sort of cyber attack. The SSL certificate puts a lock icon and https to the web address, creating an encrypted link to prevent attackers from eavesdropping or sniffing for the information or communication taking place.
PCI DSS Compliance
The PCI DSS compliance stands for Payment Card Industry- Data Security Standard. This standard contains a series of security requirements that every e-commerce company must implement regardless of scale and size. The compliance mandates creating and maintaining security policies to secure the environment. It includes all the rules about web hosting and security level at the payment processing level
Training for Employees
The best solution to secure your organization against e-commerce security threats is to train employees about the importance of data security. Educating employees is the main line of defense against e-commerce security threats and information security breach. Thorough training for employees on cybersecurity should be carried out to mitigate the risks existing in this domain.
It is important to keep an eye out for malicious activities taking place against the website or application to save the of trouble cyber attack. Implementation of a special tool to brand monitor and track down the fraudulent activities help in keeping your website and application secure from phishing and copyright infringement practices.
Remember, one critical failure can cost your company more than recoverable damages. These smart approaches will help you in securing and preventing e-commerce threats that are risking your immediate online environment. Besides, the best approach to protect from e-commerce threats is to invest in e-commerce security solutions the same way you invest in its marketing and website designing.
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