Malware is now a frequently occurring security threat that affects many eCommerce sites. Criminals like to use malware to gain access to customer billing information and other kinds of sensitive data. You need to take protection against malware very seriously because one attack can ruin your hard earned reputation. Here is a brief rundown of what malware is, and why and how you should protect yourself.
What is Malware?
Malware is a generic term used to describe any effort to hack into an eCommerce information system and steal vital data such as customer billing details, credit card numbers as well as denial of service attacks that slow down the loading speed of the site or make it completely inaccessible. Sometimes, malware attacks are classified under names like viruses, Trojans, and phishing attacks.
Viruses and Trojans can gain access to an unsecured eCommerce server and execute actions like downloading and installation of software on the server without requisite admin permission. This rogue software will then relay credit card information to the hacker’s computer. Thereafter, the information will be sold to other cybercriminals online. Phishing is also a form of cyber attack, which involves setting up a site that looks just like your e-commerce website. It will come up on unsuspecting customer’s browsers when they attempt to load your website. Without knowing, some customers will give out their credit card details to these phishing sites.
Why Should You Invest in Malware Protection?
Both large and small businesses are now attacked by malware. Although large-scale attacks on popular sitemys like the terrible TJ Maxx and Target leaks get a lot of media attention, small business are not spared at all. In fact, surveys conducted by RiskIQ showed that over 100 eCommerce shops were attacked within a period of nine months. These sites are in various industries including book publishing and fashion. So it does not matter how small your business is, if you have an active website, you must do all you can to protect it.
How to Protect Your Company’s Website from Malware
First, you should find out what the present payment card industry standard regulations (PCI DSS) are and follow them. Then take these steps which are recommended by the Federal Communications Commission:
- Do a Data Inventory: Find out the type of data that your company collects and categorize them. Then observe how you handle the data that comes from your clients. Bear in mind that data is very vulnerable while it is in transit. So ensure that your data is properly encrypted and your servers use industry-standard authentication.
- Know Who Has Access to Data: You should limit the number of people who have access to sensitive data. The greater the number of people who can access customer data, the greater the risk of cybersecurity attacks. Limit access to credit card transactions to your managers.
- Train your employees to be security conscious: This will help your staff to appreciate the importance of protecting your systems from malware attacks. Provide training for new hires and follow them up with frequent in-house training sessions.
- Have a Good Backup and Contingency Plan: Don’t get caught unaware. You should be ready to recover quickly if your site is ever hit by cybercriminals. Make sure you have a backup and recovery strategy that works.
Malware attacks can pose a serious threat to your eCommerce site and business. Don’t handle the issue of cybersecurity and protection with levity. Ensure that your store is well secured so you can protect your customers and business. Prevention is key. Don’t wait until you’ve been hacked to have a plan in place.
LightHouse Graphics specializes in several areas of online presence such as graphic design, website design, and social media marketing and content creation…just to name a few. If your business needs assistance in any of these areas, give us a call. We’d love to work with you.