Top Cloud Security Tips for Ecommerce
Many businesses are moving their most critical apps to the cloud — 69 percent of companies, to be exact. The goals here include achieving more flexibility, scalability and a lower cost of ownership than local servers on the premises tend to provide. But, despite these potential benefits, there are still challenges to consider as well. Perhaps the biggest of all is ensuring the security of IT systems and sensitive data before, during and after the migration to the cloud.
Ecommerce companies, the guardians of customers’ personal and financial information are of particular concern. While operating in the cloud offers online retailers great opportunity, taking advantage of the benefits of cloud computing imposes great responsibility as well.
Read on to learn more about some of the threats online retailers face and top cloud security tips for the ecommerce sector.
Cybersecurity Threats to Ecommerce Companies
Before you can protect against potential hacks and breaches, you have to understand their nature — and their origin.
Here are four cybersecurity threats retailers will likely see more of in the coming months, according to an expert for Digital Commerce 360:
- Attacks on web apps: Running an online store in the cloud requires a variety of apps and plug-ins. Though useful, hackers can exploit insecure apps through attacks like SQL injection of malicious code, denial-of-service (DoS), cookie poisoning and more.
- Bots: Malicious bots can manipulate product availability, block traffic to your site and affect the site speed for shoppers.
- Customer journey disruptions: Hackers can put ads on your site capable of hampering the user experience or even infecting visitors with malware.
- Phishing attacks: Hackers can impersonate your company or someone inside your company in an attempt to get sensitive information from customers and/or employees.
Now let’s dive into some tips for online retailers looking to protect themselves against these threats and others as they operate in the cloud.
Tips for Securing the Ecommerce Cloud Environment
1. Keep operating systems, firewalls and applications up to date: It sounds simple but keeping systems and applications in your network map up to date is the first line of defense. This means minimizing “shadow IT,” or devices and applications outside the jurisdiction of the IT team. Ensure employees are following best practices when it comes to downloading applications and securing any devices they use for work. Don’t skip out on updates, as this could leave you vulnerable to an attack.
2. Use SD-WAN to secure cloud connections: Ecommerce companies today have to secure a growing number of remote endpoints and devices, which is where cloud enablement via third-party software-defined networking in a wide area network (SD-WAN) can help. This strategy focuses on end-to-end security, monitoring of every device on a given network, data analysis and instant response to system breaches.
3. Ensure Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliance: PCI compliance holds your company to certain standards in terms of your IT network. These include how you handle cardholder data, how often you test your networks for vulnerabilities and your cybersecurity policy in general. Keeping these PCI standards up to date is a solid, all-around way to strengthen your cybersecurity efforts.
4. Maximize the visibility of cloud usage: Cloud environments are not automatically transparent, which can make it harder for IT and cybersecurity teams to monitor them and respond to incidents. This is why ecommerce companies must take cloud visibility seriously, strengthen policies on cloud usage for employees and work using a “zero-trust model.”
Harnessing all the benefits of cloud ecommerce also means covering all the bases in terms of security, minimizing the threat of internal and external threats.