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7 Fundamental Ecommerce Security Features Your Store Needs in 2019

8 min read
Jason March 25, 2019

When it comes to hacking, online retailers, including ecommerce stores, are the most highly targeted websites. In fact, hackers are responsible for over 90 percent of all login attempts for online stores, according to a report by Shape Security, a cyber security firm.

 What does this mean for your ecommerce website? It means ecommerce security needs to be a top priority as you seek to protect yourself and your customers.

Security for ecommerce websites refers to the set of principles and group of tools that ecommerce websites use to keep their electronic transactions and their overall websites safe.

For customers to trust a business to make purchases online, the business must have clear protocols in place to provide a safe place to shop.

For an ecommerce store to avoid costly hacking problems, it must also have those protocols in place.

In 2019, ecommerce security is even more critical, because hackers are getting more aggressive and persistent. Here are seven factors you need to implement into your ecommerce store to ensure it is secure.

1. Scan for SQL Injection

Web-based attackers can craft SQL commands that will use your online forms to trick your ecommerce site into executing commands, making your entire website vulnerable to hackers.

These fraudulent SQL commands are easily set up, and in moments can compromise the security of your site, without your knowledge.

The best way to prevent this type of fraud is through SQL injection scanners. Whether you purchase SQL injection scanners as part of your ecommerce security package or use a free program online, you should set it up so that SQL injection scanning is done on a daily basis, automatically.

2. Secure the Entire Website with HTTPS Hosting

It is no longer sufficient to simply use HTTPS for your payment pages. You must now host the entire site through HTTPS. This not only will help protect your site and your customers, but it will also improve your SEO rank through Google.

In 2014, the search engine giant indicated that it would be giving preference to sites that are hosted on secure HTTPS sites. If you have not switched your entire site, you need to do so this year.

What does it mean to switch to HTTPS? HTTPS stands for hypertext transfer protocol secure, and it adds two layers of security to your site.

First, it encrypts all of the data that flows from the server to the browser using a secure sockets layer (SSL) certificate. This protects any sensitive information from hackers during the transfer from server to browser, because the SSL certificate translates the data into a code that hackers cannot understand and utilize.

HTTPS also uses a transport layer security (TLS) protocol. This stops the modification or corruption of transferred data, while also requiring authentication during the transfer process.

Both of these will keep your entire ecommerce store secure.

3. Get Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard Accreditation

One thing an ecommerce store should never do is hold customer credit card information themselves.

If your systems are compromised and you have your customers’ credit card data stored, you could get into serious trouble.

Instead, partner with a payment gateway provider who will handle this for you and has a high level of security.

Specifically, look for a payment platform that is complaint with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, or PCI DSS. PCI DSS certification ensures you are doing all you can to protect your customers, and will increase their trust in your online store.

4. Use GeoLocation Anti-Fraud Software

Hackers tend to be global thieves, operating in different parts of the world from the stores they are targeting.

Often a stolen credit card number may be taken in one part of the world, sent somewhere else electronically, then used in an ecommerce setting to try to perform online fraud.

GeoLocation Anti Fraud Software can help reduce this risk. This software analyzes the IP Address of an online order, then sends up alerts if it appears to be using proxies or other cloaking methods to hide its geographic location.

You, then, have the option to take action to prevent the fraudulent order or run additional checks on the order to determine if it may be fraudulent.

5. Invest in a Firewall

A firewall is still an important and necessary security protocol, even in 2019. You can use a physical or web-based firewall, but this is the most important and first line requirement to create a secure online store.

A firewall will check the traffic coming into your server to take the right measures to protect your site from malware or hackers.

Anyone, whether a physical hacker or a program like a bot, that intends to do harm should be stopped through the firewall.

6. Use a Content Delivery Network

A content delivery network, or CDN, is another layer of security for your online store. A CDN uses several different servers in locations across the globe to store your site and allow visitors to access it.

This helps improve the customer experience by reducing load times and allowing your site to target multiple geographic areas, but CDNs also play a role in security.

A CDN can protect your site from Distributed Denial of Service Attacks (DDoS), because copies of your site will be located on multiple servers. Thus, if one of the servers in the network is compromised, another can pick up the traffic temporarily.

7. Understand and Insist on Password Security

Unfortunately, consumers who use weak passwords are one of the most common ways for customer information to be targeted and used by hackers.

To help protect your reputation and the safety of your customers, set up your payment platform so that customers have to use a secure password to set up an account. Then, make sure passwords are never stored as plain text. They must be properly encrypted or not stored at all in order to protect your customers.

Customer passwords are not the only passwords to be concerned about. Your own passwords that you use to access your administrative side of your store must be secure.

Choose a long, hard-to-guess password, then invest in a password storage tool to ensure that you do not have a plain text copy of your password anywhere on any computer. A password storage tool will store and encrypt your password, then load it on to your site when you need access.

Security for ecommerce websites is not something you can afford to overlook. One hack can ruin your reputation and destroy your work online, not to mention hurting your customers financially.

Make sure you take ecommerce security seriously and implement these seven fundamental features today.

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