Make Your Store a Safer Place: Ways to Improve Your Website Security
Even the widest choice can do nothing, when a store can’t provide secure transactions. To help you ensure safety of your clients information, we have made a list of things to pay attention to. Check what can be improved in your store.
Do you make backups?
A backup is a thing you hope you will never use. Still, it is better to have it unused than not to have at all. At first, backup saves you from data lost, when installing third party extensions or themes. Don’t forget about issues with hardware and software that can occur at any point. Restoring the lost data along with fixing what’s broken will unlikely bring any pleasure. Negative effect on sales goes without saying.
Every eCommerce platform offers its own way to make a backup. Most commonly the description of them may be found on the CMS’ websites. For example, Magento has it in the User Guides section (https://docs.magento.com/m2/ce/user_guide/system/backups.html). If it is too difficult to perform on your platform - use a backup app. The are created to provide easy and automatic backups, so you won’t have to bother with it any longer.
Does your website use SSL?
Just in case, let’s speak about what is SSL. Security Socket Layer is a security protocol aimed to encrypt communication between a server and an end user. It works the following way:
- a user or a server tries to access a website with SSL;
- a website must identify itself, so it send its SSL certificate to a server or a user;
- if the recipient accepts the certificate, it notifies the website about it;
- then the website sends an acknowledgement to start an SSL session and the transaction takes place
In general, SSL provides a secure session and protects the client’s personal data from being stolen. Now computer literacy is a common thing, most users pay attention to how safe the website is. With not implementing SSL, you may lose a great number of potential clients.
Apart from providing transactions security, this protocol also improves Google ranking as it is also interested in providing trusted websites. So, SSL will help you o kill two birds with one stone.
How strong are your clients’ passwords?
The issue with passwords is always acute as many users are not tend to create something strong, settling with ones that are short and easy to remember. However, it is the shop owner, who must take care of his clients’ safety. For this you can set specific rules for passwords creation like these ones:
- Usage of lower- and upper-case letters
- Minimum password length
- Usage of special symbols
- Password lifetime
- Usage of the login name in the password
Some hackers develop special algorithms for passwords generation. These rules help your customers protect themselves from it. Even one special char in a password will make it less likely to guess it.
Is Two Factor-Authentication installed in your web store? (2FA)
2FA works as an additional security layer when a user tries to login. It requests a code sent to his email of phone right after the password is entered. It makes the process of authorisation more complex and thus safer.
Two Factor-Authentication is used primarily to make the password theft pointless. Even if a hacker gets the password, he also requires the victim’s mobile device or email with full access to get the code. Otherwise he won’t be able to login successfully.
The easiest way to implement 2FA to your store is to find an extension managing with it. If you work with Magento, you may make use of Security Suite. It deals not only with 2FA, but with the whole security system of your store, like Verification Settings, Security Notifications, and Password Settings as well.
Do you track your website’s condition?
Monitoring your store will help you find out about suspicious activity as soon as possible and assume necessary measures at early stages. Suspicious activity may include usage of different credit cards by one user or discrepancy between a cardholder and a recipient name.
But not only unusual acts may be found by monitoring. This is how you can learn about sudden bugs and errors as well. Constant tracking gives you a possibility to remove a trouble quickly and with few losses.
Still, following a store 24 hours a day is a time and resources consuming thing. On the Marketplace there is a number of extensions allowing for receiving notifications if something strange happens. For example, Log Monitoring extension for Magento provides notifications for errors in var/reports and var/logs and gives the possibility to assign time and frequency of cron jobs for managing data in there.
How do you provide secure transactions?
In spite of all the security measures, hackers may already have a card number and account details taken from somewhere else. In this case you can request a CVV code as the last security stand. It is a three or four numbers code written backside of a card. As thieves very seldom have a physical card, it may protect a user from money losses.
However, you should remember that according to PCI standards, stores are not allowed to keep a CVV code. So, after every transaction this information must be deleted and then requested again for every new purchase.
What is your version of CMS?
Though your current not-updated CMS may work steadily, it doesn’t mean it will in the future. Upgrades protect you from bugs not revealed yet and technical issues that negatively affect the website work. Moreover, an old CMS is more vulnerable to hacker attacks as updates makes a platform resistant to new hacking approaches.
Not only updates is the issue of bugs fixes and technological improvements. Quite often developers add new features that may make it easier to work with your store or boost the website speed. So, even if migration to a newer version may be long and complicated, nearly always it will be repaid soon.
Do you test themes and extensions beforehand?
Unfortunately, not all the extensions and themes come from reliable developers even if they look so. A phishing program may be under the guise of a module with useful functions or even something worse. Again, some extensions may work incorrectly and break something in your store. To prevent it from happening, test everything in advance or just don’t download things from doubtful sources.
Regardless of the offered products and store size, the point of clients’ safety shouldn’t be disregarded. Let your customers feel safe when buying from you and they will return for more purchases. We have given you information on have to do that - it is your turn now.