In 2019, the global eCommerce market sales were predicted to surpass the $4.2 billion mark in 2021, with the growth in eCommerce expected to continue growing with a prediction that it will reach 21.8% by 2024, translating to an 8.2% growth in under five years.
While online business is booming, it comes with a whole set of risks most people do not consider when diving into the business. Today, cybercriminals are using sophisticated tools and methods to exploit the online eCommerce market.
Common risks faced by online businesses
As online stores advance in terms of technology and tools available for success, it is essential to know the security risks of these technologies. Here are the most common security risks every eCommerce business owner should know about.
DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks
This is a type of cybersecurity attack where your eCommerce site is suddenly flooded with requests from untraceable IPs. Hackers do this by manipulating IoT devices to take your website offline, leaving it vulnerable to attacks like malware infections.
DDoS attacks have been on the rise in the last few years, especially in peak online business seasons. In 2018, eCommerce sites experienced a 109% increase in these attacks compared to previous years. A DDoS attack can be expensive to a business, including reputational and financial loss.
Credit card fraud
Credit card fraud has become a common threat to eCommerce mainly because it is a difficult type of fraud to trace. With eCommerce sites processing hundreds of transactions online, it can be difficult to detect a fraudulent transaction. Credit card fraud causes online businesses to lose inventory and suffer financial losses for compensating the aggrieved card owner, not forgetting the reputational damage done to your business.
Cybercriminals design a malware program to enable them to gain access to your site and cause damage to a network. Malware files can be inserted into eCommerce web pages using SQL injection or download processes. Once in the system, a hacker can fake their identity, control your networks, access your database, send malicious emails and get complete control of your system.
How to protect your business online
HTTPS protocol guarantees secure communications online and is an easy way to secure your eCommerce site. To be able to enable HTTPS for your website, you need to acquire an SSL certificate. An HTTPS secured site has a green padlock on the address bar. This helps your visitors to know that they can trust your site and that it is authentic.
If you have employees who work remotely, using a VPN for your eCommerce site and network is the best way to guarantee data safety. A Virtual Private Network (VPN) encrypts internet traffic, ensuring security for all computers in your network. It can also update your software, check for malware, and ensure data safety, even on public Wi-Fi connections.
Use strong passwords and 2FA
One of the ways cyber criminals gain access to eCommerce sites is by guessing the admin password. Using a strong password makes it impossible to guess. The best passwords should comprise upper and lower cases letters, numbers, and special characters.
You can further strengthen your account using 2FA. This is a security protocol where anyone attempting to log into your site will have to produce an additional code sent to the user device after entering the passwords to access the site admin platform.
Cybersecurity is an important area for online businesses but not all business owners pay enough attention to that. Be aware of the risks and make sure you practice good cybersecurity to stay protected.