How to Secure Your Website From Payment Fraud?
Cybercrime and payment fraud are on the rise but luckily there are various steps you can take to help secure your ecommerce website.
The ecommerce industry is booming. With more online stores available than ever before, online shoppers have access to everything they could ever want with just a click of a button.
As the industry grows though so too does the prevalence of online hackers and ecommerce fraud. Just like your ecommerce business, ecommerce fraudsters operate 24/7.
If you own an online store then it’s essential that you secure your website from hackers who can steal from you and your customers, damage your reputation and alienate your customers.
What is Ecommerce Payment Fraud?
With 77% of US companies claiming to have been a victim of payment fraud when using digital payment systems, it’s clear that payment fraud isn’t something you can ignore or cross your fingers and hope won’t happen to you.
Ecommerce payment fraud is criminal deception that occurs when a commercial transaction takes place over the internet and often results in financial or personal gain for the fraudster.
When a customer buys a product or service from your website a Card Not Present (CNP) purchase takes place.
Rather than being handed a physical credit card as you would be in bricks and mortar stores, you have to trust that the person authorizing the transaction is in fact the approved cardholder.
Ecommerce payment fraud is growing in popularity in part thanks to how easy it is to undertake. Prior to the internet fraudsters had to physically steal people’s credit cards. Not any more.
A simple visit to the dark web will land them on multiple websites selling stolen credit card details. Scary stuff…
There are multiple types of payment fraud in operation targeting online retailers including stolen credit card information, phishing, and card testing.
How to Secure Your Website from Payment Fraud
To help reduce the risk of payment fraud impacting you and your customers, here are 7 things you can do to help secure your website.
1. Conduct regular security audits
If there’s an issue with the security of your website then you need to make sure that you spot it before fraudsters do. That’s why running regular security audits is so important.
Some of the key things to check when running security audits include:
- Make sure that you’re backing up your online store regularly enough.
- Check your SSL certificate is up-to-date and working.
- Change your admin log-ins regularly to high-strength passwords.
- Scan your website for any malware.
- Always encrypt communication between your store and your customers.
Ensuring that you have an SSL certificate running on your website is one of the most crucial steps to securing your website.
According to the guys at SecurionPay, an SSL certificate will “help you to encrypt information that goes through your website including sensitive data and credit card details that is often shared at the checkout process.
“Having the padlock icon visible in the URL bar next to your web address instantly tells customers that your website is protected and safe to use. This will help to grow your reputation online and build your credibility.”
2. Use a trusted ecommerce platform
When setting up your online store always opt for a trusted ecommerce platform to build your website on.
There are multiple ecommerce platforms available that offer you a whole host of services including a secure website. Two of the major ecommerce platforms are Shopify and WooCommerce, both of which have various payment plans available depending on your budget.
3. Keep your systems up to date
If you use any plugins on your website (and we’re betting you do) then you need to make sure that these, along with any other systems or platforms you use to manage your website, are kept up to date.
Cybercriminals are clever and many make use of various technologies to identify weak points in your website’s security, one of which is out-of-date plugins or operating software.
A little bit of regular software maintenance can go a long way to helping to protect both you and your customers.
4. Choose a trustworthy payment processor
Payment processing is a rather difficult process. To successfully establish this process, ecommerce businesses have to integrate a payment processor.
A payment processor initiates the payment process and transfers the data for a successful transfer between merchant and customer to be completed.
The data payment processors handle is very sensitive. Any fraudster that can get access to this data will do serious damage to both customers and merchants.
Thus choosing a trustworthy payment processor can be crucial to prevent ecommerce payment fraud.
5. Avoid storing sensitive customer data
Hackers can’t steal something that you don’t have, meaning the less sensitive customer data you store, the less likely you are to undergo a privacy breach.
Only ask customers to input the minimum sensitive data required to complete the purchase and avoid storing or even asking for details such as date of birth and social security numbers.
If your customers’ data is stolen from you it will cause a massive dent to your online reputation.
6. Install an anti-fraud tool
Whilst there are multiple things that you can and should be doing to help protect your website from payment fraud, there are also various fraud prevention software tools available to help you out too.
Some tools offer simple functions such as validating email and billing addresses whilst others offer more robust protection including chargeback guarantees, manual reviews, and auto-decline for high-risk transactions.
When it comes to protecting your website from payment fraud knowledge really is power and whilst cybercriminals might be getting cleverer, so should you.
Now that you have a better understanding of what payment fraud is, hopefully, you feel empowered to protect your website, customers, and reputation from online fraudsters.
Ecommerce transactions will always come with a certain degree of risk, but by upping the security levels of your online store, you’ll be helping to keep that risk to a minimum – something your customers will thank you for.
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