E-commerce and hence eCommerce security solutions have been steadily gaining ground amongst consumers over the past few years. Easy access to the internet and smart devices has further exponentially increased the demand for eCommerce. The chart below clearly showcases the percentage growth of eCommerce businesses worldwide.
The statistics above indicate the rising demand curve for eCommerce solutions. The peak was observed during the pandemic when almost every utility was delivered through online portals. The point to understand, however, is that with every business possibility and the opportunity to make profits, also comes hazards. The hazard of having an eCommerce business is its vulnerability to security-related frauds. Annually, eCommerce businesses experience more than 32% of successful cyber-attacks (i.e., cyber threats that end up doing damage) in the form of data breaches, or financial frauds. Without a proper eCommerce website security solution, businesses risk harming the company’s profits while losing the consumer’s trust. In worst cases, there might even be legal implications for the business, though for no fault of theirs, aside from not following proper eCommerce security protocols.
Top 10 Types of Security Threats
According to the Global Ecommerce Security Report, almost 78% of the businesses surveyed reported one cybersecurity incident. Cybersecurity attackers work by finding eCommerce security vulnerabilities in your platform. In most cases, it is a lack of a proper eCommerce security solution to filter out harmful bots, spam, malware, etc. According to the GES report, below is a chart that showcases the percentage of security-related attacks on eCommerce businesses in 2020 alone. This percentage is calculated by comparing the data from the year 2019.
From the chart above, it is clear that the cybersecurity of the eCommerce platforms is much compromised, and if proper measures are not taken, it might lead to considerable losses. As it is, reports suggest that 62% of eCommerce businesses lose between $100 to 250,000 due to these eCommerce security threats.
Mentioned below are ten types of cybersecurity threats that compromise eCommerce platforms and businesses.
- Financial frauds
For every facility to make online payments, there is a risk of getting involved in financial fraud or scams. From the beginning of the eCommerce solutions, businesses have been plagued with the eCommerce security threats involving payment gateways and finances. While the list is never-ending, listed below are the most common cybersecurity threats faced by eCommerce businesses.
- Credit card – Ever since credit cards came about, people have been facing frauds where cybercriminals steal credit card details and information to make purchases in an eCommerce store. Another way hackers commit credit card fraud is by getting a new card issued by changing the verification details of the previously stolen credit card credentials.
- UPI payments – With emerging times, financial frauds have emerged. Moving on from credit cards, the new system of payments on eCommerce platforms is through UPI payments. It requires a unique identification ID or a QR code, which, when scanned, allows the user to make a direct payment. This ID is linked to the user’s bank account and allows them hassle-free, quick payments. These days, however, hackers have found a way to commit financial fraud through UPIs as well. Sending their own UPI code to the consumers, and asking for payments on behalf of the eCommerce store, has become a frequent mode of financial fraud.
The practice of impersonating a business and sending fraudulent communications to consumers is quite common. This practice has resulted in huge business losses, not to mention the financial loss faced by the consumers. In most cases, hackers pose as some eCommerce retailer, even having a website similar to the original business that makes the customers believe them as the original. When the consumers purchase from such platforms, the payments get deducted from their accounts, however, no product is delivered. Not only does this cause disrepute to the original business, but it also causes enormous financial losses to both the parties involved – the business and the consumer.
Spamming is the practice of sending infected emails or links to the consumers. These infected links can be either emailed or posted on websites in the form of contact forms or other clickable links. When clicked, these links direct the users to the spam website, where consumers are most likely to be conned. Aside from the fact that these links are connected to fake websites, a spamming deluge also results in slow internet speeds, browser issues, and website loading delays.
Malicious software used as Spyware, Trojan viruses, or ransomware is generally referred to as Malware. Hackers generally develop such software and install them into your management software or IT devices without your knowledge through a random click on unseemly links. Not just eCommerce software, but such malware can also affect your consumers and their devices. Malware also has the capacity of deleting all your important data files from your computer, which might ultimately impact records such as orders, inventories, consumer details, etc.
Special Bots are developed by hackers that take advantage of vulnerabilities of your website code. For instance, a website that uses SSL encryption but lacks HTTPS code can easily be taken over by bots. There are typically four types of bots used:
- Impersonator Bots – Almost 24% of the Bots attacks fall under this category. These bots have a false identity that helps them pass through the website security.
- Scraper Bots – These types of Bots are used to steal unauthorized information or data from websites. Such bots can also be used to override pricing models, misguiding the consumers concerning the price of the product. In most cases, scraper bots are used by competitors to understand the pricing methodology of their competitors.
- Spammer Bots – These types of bots are used to insert spam links into discussion forums, chats, or comments.
- Scavenger bots – Such bots are always on the lookout for any vulnerabilities in your website coding and can exploit such vulnerabilities to get unauthorized access to data, or any other illegal activity.
- Existing vulnerabilities
Most eCommerce websites have embedded vulnerabilities that hackers can take advantage of. Such vulnerabilities make the eCommerce websites susceptible to SQL injections or cross-site scripting.
- SQL injection – In this cyber attack, hackers insert a SQL code through your data submission forms, corrupting your entire database. This allows the hackers to get hold of your database, while later deleting the entire trail and your data.
- DoS and DDoS attacks
DoS or Denial of Service and DDoS or Distributed Denial of Service is a type of eCommerce website security threat that prevents legitimate users from accessing the web portal, causing functional and sales disruptions. This attack is generally launched by sending a deluge of requests from untraceable IP addresses to the website server in a bid to overwhelm the servers, thereby shutting down the service access by the users. The difference between DoS and DDoS attacks is that while DoS attacks are directed from the hacker’s device to the target, DDoS hacker targets the business’s computer using several other computers.
- Credential stuffing
As the name suggests, credential stuffing is when hackers use leaked/stolen usernames and passwords to gain access to systems that have weak authentication methods. In most cases, the reason for this type of attack is weak passwords or reusing old or compromised passwords. Oftentimes, though, alphanumeric passwords to are compromised by phishing or keystroke tracking. In more cases, credential stuffing-type cyberattacks are on a rise due to the ease of getting access to the business systems.
- Brute force attack
A brute force attack is where hackers crack your admin ID and password using several combinations to take control of your eCommerce website. In most cases, this happens when websites keep generic usernames and passwords like “admin” and “password” or “1234” and so on. The best way to stow away such attacks is by maintaining a good password hygiene and authentication system.
- Man in the middle
Many a time when the users logging onto your eCommerce platform are not using a secure network, hackers might be able to listen to the communication between the eCommerce website and your consumers.
Ways to ensure eCommerce Website Security
- Security hygiene
SSL and HTTPS – Always ensure that your eCommerce website is up-to-date with the recent security protocols. Following HTTPS safety protocols and obtaining SSL certificates from the host of your websites will ensure that several of the eCommerce security threats are addressed and taken care of.
Password Hygiene – One of the most important aspects of it all is the password. Ensure that you keep changing your passwords from time to time, not repeating the old ones, and following alphanumeric guidelines for a strong password. Never share passwords with strangers and for eCommerce websites, install authentication procedures including OTP (One Time Password, etc.).
API protection – APIs and mobile applications are as much exposed to cyber threats as websites. Therefore, follow proper security protocols to develop a secure interface for the API and apps to function.
- Anti-virus and anti-malware software solutions
To safeguard the eCommerce website from most of the bots and malware, installing anti-malware software solutions is a must. The anti-malware software detects and removes any infectious software before it can infect the computer or the IT system dealing with your eCommerce platform. Antivirus helps by preventing viruses from attacking your system, thereby saving your system files and other sensitive data from being corrupted.
- Firewall Security
A firewall enables your eCommerce website security to successfully deal with cyberattacks such as SQL injections, XSS, insecure networks, and others like these. Firewall helps regulate the inbound traffic towards your website, ensuring that only legitimate traffic gets directed to your site.
- AVS or Address Verification System
AVS is the ultimate weapon for merchants to ensure that credit card frauds are minimized. AVS is provided by the banks issuing the credit card, which works by identifying suspicious credit card transactions online. AVS checks the billing address on the eCommerce website and matches it with the billing address of the credit card. The check report is sent back to the merchant site, and then the merchant decides if the transaction is legitimate or fraudulent activity.
- Educating Staff and Clients
Spread the word amongst your clients about ways to ensure safe access to the eCommerce website and its services. Keep revising the user IDs and access to ensure no ex-employee has access to the system after they leave service. Further, reminding customers to keep resetting their passwords is a good practice to ensure that proper password hygiene is maintained, thus saving your eCommerce platform from hackers and cyberattacks.
Getting a dedicated website security solution for your eCommerce store will prove to be much beneficial for your business in the long run. Apart from that, always have a plan B in place, and keep a data backup at all times. Have your IT team regularly scan your website for any malware or such threatening plug-ins. Develop a multi-layer security system that enhances data protection.
Is there any vulnerability in your eCommerce platform that needs fixing?
E-orchids Tech Solutions offers to check your platform and fix any vulnerabilities that make your eCommerce website susceptible to cyber-attacks. Contact us to know your options, or drop in your details in the contact form and we will surely connect back with you. Act today to save your tomorrow.