As the eCommerce industry continues to grow, accepting online payments has become a prerequisite for most businesses. Accepting online payments allows you global audience reach for increased sales, low-cost transactions, and payment security compared to traditional modes of payment. It optimizes customer journey, gives consumers access to multiple payment options, and appeals to impulse buyers, boosting customer experience and sales.
Online payments may face technical challenges like downtime, disturbances, and fraud, including identity theft, phishing attacks, and database exploits. When consumers shop online, they expect you to protect their data. Below are security tips for businesses accepting online payments.
Ensure PCI-DSS compliance
Credit card companies mandate PCI compliance to ensure credit card transactions security in the payment industry. It involves technical and operational standards that businesses should follow to protect and secure cardholders’ credit card data. Failure to comply with the PCI standards card data can be stolen for fraudulent actions and identity theft. The PCI-DSS compliance steps are numerous and complex, but a credit card scanner makes the compliance process less strenuous.
Data security compliance lowers the risks of harmful brand exposure, fines, and penalties for data breach legal costs and keeps your business’s brand reputation intact. Since the scanner card quickly looks for non-compliant and secures it, you can use it for PCI-DSS sampling and the creation of PCI scope evidence. Using advanced credit card scanning ensures insecure credit card data storage is quickly identified; you can schedule scans to occur regularly and automatically receive compliance status reports.
Avoid storing customer payment data
Storing customer payment data could be risky for you if sensitive client data is leaked, and should you be found negligent, you can be held liable for all the damages thereof. You can also face hefty fines for being PCI non-compliant, and your brand reputation could be damaged. To stay safe from credit card data breaches, discard any payment data once a transaction is completed. If you must store your clients’ names and account numbers, consider protecting this information using cloud-based storage, private network, or data encryption so intruders can’t read it.
Verify your transactions
Verifying your transactions helps you detect any suspicious activities to ensure safety. To verify transactions, ensure there’s an address verification match, make it mandatory for customers to enter their data security code, take note of suspiciously large orders from return clients, and immediately call them. Pay attention to strange email addresses, products being shipped to areas known for fraud, and the client not taking advantage of offers like free shipping.
Take advantage of encryption and tokenization
Tokenization removes data from a system and replaces it with an associated value, while encryption keeps data in its original form but makes it inaccessible without a security key. Data encryption ensures client data security, helping you avoid regulatory fines. It also improves data integrity and keeps clients’ identities secure. Besides creating smooth payment experiences and satisfied clients, tokenization reduces data breach risks, helps you build client trust, and enhances data security compliance, keeping customer and business information secure. Combining tokenization and encryption will help you become fully PCI-DSS compliant.
Learn everything about online payment risks
To securely accept online payments, learn about the risks involved so you can find effective protection methods. You can also enlighten your employees to reduce online payment risks. This will help you and your staff learn and start identifying fraud patterns even before a fraudulent activity is committed.
Educate your employees
Your employees are your first line of defense, and if they unknowingly download malware or fall for a phishing scam, your company and client financial data can be compromised. Educating and training your employees on secure payment options and how to identify fraudulent activities and emails can protect your business against reputational and financial risks.
To improve online payment security, educate your staff on the need to identify suspicious transactions and activities, make it a rule for employees to regularly update their passwords while observing a minimum complex character requirement, and create an internal checks and balances system.
Use a secure eCommerce platform
A secure eCommerce platform protects the privacy, and sensitive customer data on a website safeguards the finances of an online business, prevents fraud and financial scams, enhancing business reputation. Failure to implement the necessary security measures on websites puts you and your customers at risk of payment fraud, data breaches, scams, and threats like phishing, DDoS attacks, malware, and more.
To eCommerce site security, implement consistent eCommerce software updates, CVV verification, switch to HTTP protocols, employ an address verification system, use firewalls, and ensure payment gateway security. Consider frequently backing up your data and using eCommerce security plugins, multi-layer security, constant purging of customer data, and training employees on web security.
Apply strong customer authentication
Strong customer authentication is a European regulatory requirement that reduces fraud and makes online and contactless offline payments more secure. It applies to customer-initiated contactless offline and online payments within Europe. To authenticate an online card payment, use 3D secure to add an extra step after check out, so the bank prompts the cardholder to provide more information to complete payment. Using 3D Secure 2 for online card payment authentication offers a better user experience and lowers the friction authentication adds into the checkout flow.
Keep your software updated
Outdated software is prone to suffering major data breaches and malware infection resulting from hackers exploiting an OS vulnerability. Keeping your software constantly updated prevents data breaches from occurring, making it difficult for data breaches to occur. Regular software updates also enable your payment system to get new and improved security features, making it difficult for hackers and other cybercriminals to access sensitive customer and business data.
Leverage two-factor authentication
Protecting your clients’ accounts on payment gateways with passwords and usernames alone isn’t enough as hackers can easily crack them down. The two-factor authentication password adds a layer of protection to your regular password, making it hard for hackers to access your customers’ accounts. Ensuring that your clients use two-factor authentication ensures that only authorized card holders’ can make payments, increasing security.
Failure to ensure security when accepting online payments can lead to financial losses and business reputational damage. Consider using the above tips if your business gets online payments to enhance security.