Payment processing systems of some of the largest companies in the world have been hacked into with alarming regularity over the last 24 months. Much of this online fraud has been blamed on the Heartbleed virus, but recent announcements show that despite the all of the extra online payment processing security measures, online fraud seems to be on the increase. Recently we have heard from Home Depot that it has been attacked in a similar way to companies such as Target. News of such attacks put online consumers on edge, and if these large companies can’t protect cardholder data, how can smaller online businesses?
Online fraud spreads its net
Most of these cyber criminals gain access to data during the payment processing. Card details are then used to make fraudulent purchases, often from other online businesses. Increasing in prevalence is the use of personal details, with medical records accessed via card details. Cinese hackers broke into the computer network of Community Health Systems last month, stealing personal information of 4.5 million customers.
While all these cyber-attacks are bad news for online business as a whole, it presents opportunities for SMEs to increase their business.
Help your customers avoid online fraud
The vast majority of online fraud is committed by hackers stealing information from the largest companies. This, of course, makes business sense: the effort and cost to a hacker to access data held by smaller companies is not far less than to access data held within larger organisations. The relative payout, however, is hugely different.
If two very similar safes were stood side-by-side and one held £50 while the other was stuffed with $10 million, which would the safe-breaker want to crack open?
Why not blog about online fraud, and highlight the fact that it is large companies attacked?
Payment processing providers help to protect your customer
Many of the larger companies hold their customers data on their systems. SMEs tend to use third party providers. This means a hacker attacking such a business will yield little to no golden data for the cyber thief. Let your customers know that you use a third party payment processing provider which benefits from the very latest in modern cyber-crime fighting techniques.
Fighting cyber-crime from within
Some of the easiest and cheapest ways of fighting cyber-crime are to ensure that your internal processes work toward security. Make sure passwords are changed at least monthly, and when a member of staff leaves delete all passwords and access immediately. Make certain that all computers have a timed display, so that after a few minutes of inactivity they become locked.
Limit internet access, and ban the use of social media sites unless for business use. While cloud computing saves the need for internalised storage space, they are popular destinations for cyber-criminals.
Highlighting the ways in which your company fights cyber-crime and protects your customer will help build trust and customer loyalty. If you would like to discuss ways in which a third-party payment processing provider can help, feel free to contact North Payments today.