The 10+1 Security Practices You Must Apply to Protect Your E-Commerce Site
Who wants to carry cumbersome wallets when you can pay through your cell phone? Who wants to be in constant anxiety and at guard to look out for pickpockets when the only thing you want to be careful about is your cell phones? Who wants to go to four different shops when you can get it in four clicks?
From shopping for groceries to ordering food. From sending a gift to someone to sending gift cards. Everything is just a click away. Thanks to e-commerce.
But with incredible technological advancement and enormous data involved, there comes a high risk of getting hacked.
We all can work and protect our houses from thieves, but how to protect our data clouds from filthy thieves?
The answer is by indulging in secure e-commerce practices.
This article is a compilation of expert-recommended security practices (presented with the perspective of both the customer and the webmaster). If followed diligently, these practices are sure to safeguard your store against all ills.
Scroll down and protect your store today.
E-Commerce Security Measures for Consumers
Are you a user of e-commerce sites and want to make a safe and secure transaction? Well, follow this four-step security practice to ensure that you never have to regret losing your hard-earned money in the process.
1. Look For Security Seal on the Website
Not all e-commerce websites are safe to surf and transact into. Some are built on an insecure content management system and lack proper security structure. You can easily distinguish between a safe site from an unsafe one by looking for a trusted security seal on it.
Websites secured by Astra Security, Norton, McAfee, etc. Further, certifications from BBB (Better Business Bureau), PCI-DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) indicate that the website has been tested for card security.
2. Check for SSL Certificates
Secure Socket Layer uses special keys to encrypt the data for two or more than two client-server relationships. All the data is safe and unchanged unless asked by the author. SSL certificates are that online encryption standard that uses keys to ensure encryption of your data. Look for SSL certificates before using the e-commerce site.
3. Use Two-Factor Authentication
A lot of users like to keep a second password. The two-factor authentication works as your second password; the first password is the CVV number/your UPI password as per the bank’s order. But when you back it with another password, be it a One-Time Password or other details you are working towards the path of virtual safety.
4. Keep Your Software & Hardware Updated
It has often been found that hacker target the sites or applications which haven’t been updated for some time. New software versions are more secure and difficult to hack as compared to the old ones. Ensure that you are operating from a secure hardware setting and an updated software while making a transaction.
E-commerce Security Measures for Developers
If you want to start your own business and turn the world around with your mind-blowing ideas? Well, you first need to gain the trust of your targeted audience, and that will be achieved if you are providing them with secure e-commerce websites.
Following are the best security practices you can follow to run a safe store online:
1. Switch to HTTPS
As we already discussed, old software and protocols are more comfortable to hack into. Here is an example of that HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol). HTTP has lived its course of life until HTTPS made an entrance.
HTTPS with an added S (where S stands for Secure) is the way for data transmission in the future.
The significant advantage of HTTPS is that it encrypts the data transfer between your server and your customer’s server so that no middle man can intercept it.
The more visible advantage is that having HTTPS also confers your store URL with a trusted green sign beside it. This secure mark is known to build trust in the user for your e-commerce store. Also, sites using HTTPS rank better on Google.
Clearly, switching to HTTPS can do you better than not. Hence, buy an SSL certificate for your website and secure your site.
2. Secure Your Servers and Admin Panels
Never use passwords that are easy to hack into. Setting common words such as Admin, Password, your name, proper words right out of the dictionary should be avoided at any cost.
Further, avoid usage of common combinations like 12345678, 1111111, etc. instead, create secure passwords. Your servers need to be secure even before you promise security to your users.
Admin Panel is the control room of your site and a coveted target. Do ensure that the credentials for your admin panel are well protected. Moreover, you can also restrict public access to your admin panel by allowing only a set of trusted IPs and denying everyone else.
A plugin like Limit Login Attempts for WordPress or something similar might come handy in discouraging brute-force attempts.
3. Payment Gateway Security
The PCI-DSS (Payment Card Industry – Data Security Standard) is an association which ensures safe card checkouts for customers. Make sure your store complies with the PCI-DSS rules and standards.
It will make your payment processes easy, secure and fast. Hence, we strongly recommend obtaining a Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) accreditation.
4. Scan Your Website Regularly
Scanning your website regularly for malware and infection is another good practice.
Given the fact that it takes two to three weeks to discover a hack often it is too late when you do come to know about it.
By then, your hacked website might have become the talk of the town. This could also result in a plunge in search engine rankings for your store.
You will not have to suffer such a fate if you scan your store regularly for malware & infections. A dedicated security solution that comes with an in-built malware scanner will be the best to carry out regular & timely scans.
5. Use Website Firewalls
Website firewalls monitor all coming traffic on your site and protect your website from the coming cyberthreat. Now, there is no dearth of website firewalls, but to find a trusted security firewall is still a task.
However, there are a couple of security solutions that indeed do their job very well. Astra Security is one such solution. Astra firewall ensures real-time monitoring and protection for your website.
Security plugin by Astra
Besides the firewall, Astra security plugin also comes with a malware scanner, one-click malware removals, general security check, immediate malware cleanup by experts, security audits and more.
6. Employ Multi-Layer Security
If the user forgets to ensure his two-fold security check, there remains the risk of anyone intercepting the data between the customer and the bank. Hackers can steal customer’s account credentials, credit card details, One-Time Passwords and more.
7. Security Audits & Penetration Testing
Another security practice that you should not overlook is Security Audits & Penetration Testing. With a security audit, you can discover hidden vulnerabilities, loopholes & bugs in your website. Not waiting for a brutal hack to tell you about vulnerabilities in your site is always preferable than learning the hard way. Starting with security audits can also save you valuable time and money in the long run.
Technology has tried its best to provide us with feasibility, and we surely don’t want to lose everything we acquired.
No matter if you are the online shopper or the store owner, online security remains of utmost importance. The mentioned security measures are sure to benefit you in transacting securely.
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