7 Effective Cybersecurity Tips for Black Friday and Cyber Monday

7 Effective Cybersecurity Tips for Black Friday and Cyber Monday

The holiday season is just around the corner. Leading eCommerce websites will offer irresistible deals and discounts on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Online sales are all set to rise to 18% from 14% last year, as predicted by the Deloitte retail survey. Consumers have saved money for months so they can splurge on their favorite video gaming consoles and smartphones.

Put yourself in the shoes of one of these eCommerce retailers who have everything in place and are vying to break their previous year’s sales record on this Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Suddenly, your eCommerce website comes under a DDoS attack, which renders your website inaccessible just when your Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales were about to go live. It took you weeks to recover from that cyber-attack but by the time you recovered, shopping season was gone with the wind.

To ensure your eCommerce does not suffer the same fate this Black Friday and Cyber Monday, here are effective cybersecurity tips that eCommerce websites can use to deliver a safer online shopping experience to buyers.

1. Focus on Cloud Security

Online retailers need to understand that their cloud providers only protect the cloud infrastructure that your company resources are stored on. This means that eCommerce businesses must take the responsibility of protecting their applications and network themselves.

Unfortunately, they don’t do it because they think that it is the responsibility of the cloud provider, which makes them more vulnerable to cybersecurity attacks. eCommerce businesses should keep an eye on cloud server misconfigurations and easy to guess passwords because they are two of the most significant vulnerabilities that let hackers bypass security. Follow the cloud security best practices to secure your cloud-based infrastructure.

2. Segment the Network

The holiday season is the time when your eCommerce website will see a spike in website traffic. This is when you will have to balance the load more efficiently. The best way to do that is to segment your network or create a new network for all your devices such as POS terminals, video cameras, and security systems. Even if the attacker succeeds in exploiting the weakness in one of those devices, it won’t impact your eCommerce website.

3. Be Aware of Skimmers

Hackers will try to inject a JavaScript code on your checkout page to steal credit card information from your customers. eCommerce businesses should keep an eye on malicious third-party code and minimize JavaScript code as much as possible. Hackers also use cross-site scripting, SQL injection and broken access controls to steal your buyer’s sensitive information. Online retailers should implement cybersecurity measures and systems to protect their customer’s data.

4. Secure Your Mobile Apps

With more people using their mobile devices to shop, it is important for eCommerce businesses to have mobile applications. Make sure that your eCommerce app is developed by following application security best practices. Frequently review your vulnerability management processes and install critical patches and system updates on mobile apps.

5. Train Your Staff

Lack of employee awareness and training make your business vulnerable to social engineering attacks. That is why hackers frequently launch these attacks to trick your employees. As an eCommerce business gearing up for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, it is essential to train your staff and increase their cybersecurity awareness by investing in cybersecurity awareness programs.

Train them on how they can detect and prevent fraud and data loss and how they can take advantage of threat intelligence to prevent cyber-attacks. Have incident response mechanisms in place so that you know what action you should take in which situation.

6. Watch Out for Seasonal Scams

As the holiday season nears, scammers become active. They target businesses with seasonal scams. From offering to replace your POS terminals to providing fraudulent gift cards and payment cards, scammers use different tactics. Online retailers should take a holistic approach and train everyone from their cashiers to customer service reps in identifying scams. A customer service representative should match the voice of the caller with the name on the card while a cashier should keep an eye out for crooked strips and residue tape because they might contain malicious code that can wreak havoc on your POS.

7. Join Industry Groups

Be a part of a community that can help you with threat intelligence. It can be an industry group or information sharing and analysis centers. Joining an industry group will give you access to useful resources such as online training, tutorials and even courses.  This will not only help you stay up to date with the latest cybersecurity threats but also assist you in protecting against those threats. Additionally, you can learn from the experiences of others and protect your business from the most common cybersecurity threats.

How do you deliver a safe shopping experience through your online store on this festive season? Let us know in the comments section below.

About the Author
Sarmad Hasan
Sarmad Hasan is a content marketing expert at HostNoc. He writes on variety of topics ranging from cybersecurity to cloud computing. Sarmad is an avid reader and loves to explore new avenues.

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