Cyber Security Mistakes That Small eCommerce Businesses Should Avoid

eCommerce businesses

Small eCommerce businesses are vulnerable to malware and other various forms of cyber attacks. Oftentimes, small eCommerce business owners do not understand the importance of cyber security because they have the assumption that cyber criminals only launch attacks of major corporations. However, cyber criminals tend to enjoy higher success rates when they target small businesses. Here is a quick look at some major cyber security mistakes that small eCommerce business owners make and should address them effectively:

Mistake A: You Choose to Ignore the Mushrooming DDoS Trend

Between 2015 and 2017, a third of the world’s IPv4 addresses were affected by some type of denial of service (DoS) attack. Nearly half of the targeted addresses were traced back to the United States. Website hosting companies were some of those major targets, e.g. Wix, Google Cloud, and GoDaddy. DDoS attacks can be launched from more than one source and they are almost impossible to stop. The rate of these attacks has also been rising steadily as the Internet of Things takes shape.

Because DDoS attacks have evolved into increasingly damaging events and in sophistication, they can make regaining customer trust difficult as well as communication and service outages. Today, you should consider paying your trusted service providers for automated DDoS mitigation, at the edge of your network.

Mistake B: You Implement Unsecured Third-Party Web Plugins

Small businesses tend to employ an unnecessary amount of open source code and plugins. The aforementioned can be exploited down the road to give cyber criminals unauthorized access to any web properties that allow them to run. An example of an exploit is keylogger software. It can steal credit card data when a customer completes an online purchase. Do you know that malware packages can inject JavaScript code into eCommerce sites that run outdated or unpatched versions of shopping cart software from OpenCart, Powerfront, and Magento?

Today, you should combat those threats posed by risky third-party web components by working with reputable web development companies and web hosting providers. You should make sure that they provide periodic and routine security reviews. In addition, their contracts and agreements should include a patching service level agreement.

Mistake C: Your Website Utilizes Unvetted Open Source Code

Some small eCommerce businesses make the mistake of using open source software in order to cut costs. However, this move is not recommended. It increases one’s vulnerability to today’s unforgiving cyberattacks. When it comes to open source, there is no accountability within the developer community. What’s more, open source tools are compromised on a frequent basis via the creation of flawed versions and/or extension corruptions.

Remember, the attraction for criminals grows along with revenues and traffic! As a reasonable investment, you shouldn’t mind spending on remediating anomalous activity (that could proliferate a potential attack), analyze code relevance to website functionality, and identifying all executable codes.

How to Protect Yourself

Fret not, for all it takes are some simple steps to start enhancing cyber security. Yes, you can start even if you lack the assistance of IT personnel as well. You can set Google Alerts, use complex passwords to maintain password security, and keep a clean, online digital presence. However, if you want to make your job easier, you can always leverage the expertise of managed IT providers that offer cyber threat protection. By working with managed service providers, you will find that it’s easier to address the limited technologies and skilled manpower that are needed to maintain or enhance cyber security.