Protecting Your Business on Cyber Monday and Beyond

Black Friday and Cyber Monday. We already know how crazy Black Friday can get. One keyword search on YouTube brings up countless videos of people recklessly clawing at each other for electronics, toys, appliances, and other items whose prices have been drastically slashed for the occasion.

Cyber Monday trades the mob mentality of Black Friday for a more concentrated panic online. The consequence is directed at the protection of personal identification and data.  This time last year, the National Retail Federation found that 122 million Americans planned to shop online. That number is sure to increase this year, however, that doesn’t necessarily mean consumers aren’t wary of the risks of online shopping.

How Safe is Online Shopping?

In a 2016 identity fraud study, it was discovered that there were 15 million victims of identity fraud in the U.S. — 16% more than the year before. Of course, it is the responsibility of the consumer to exercise good password habits, ideally alphanumeric, and routinely changed. They must also exercise good judgement when choosing where to make their online purchases. This isn’t just referring to sketchy retail sites. Legitimate and established online retailers aren’t immune to security breaches. Recently, Forever 21 notified customers that certain stores reported a possible payment data breach due to non-operational security encryption tools that were installed back in 2015. This isn’t the first time Hostway has discussed the topic of data breaches in major enterprises. Recently, we wrote about managed security issues with AWS that led to the exposure of data for several organizations such as Dow Jones and Verizon.  And that wasn’t the only Amazon cloud server breach this year.

“Cyber Monday trades the mob mentality of Black Friday for a more concentrated panic online.”

With events like Cyber Monday, it’s important to make sure your business security protocols are up-to-date, scalable, and PCI-compliant. Without taking these precautions, the cost to your business could be substantial. The average cost of a data breach per record — for instance, a single compromised credit card — was $172 for the retail industry in 2016. At that cost, with an average of 122 million online shoppers, that presents a very expensive risk that should not be taken lightly. Not only for profits, but for customer trust and loyalty.

It’s Your Job to Protect Shopping Online

For many businesses that depend on the cloud, it is their obligation to safeguard the customer information stored within it. And the first step is to perform a risk assessment of your infrastructure. Instead of remaining vulnerable to threats, work with a trusted managed security provider that can provide expertly managed cloud solutions that are compliant and secure. This way you can focus more on your business while making sure customers receive the care they deserve.

Finally, in another survey, 57 percent of online shoppers believed the greatest identity theft risk they face is the data breach of an online retailer. Forty percent of those surveyed said businesses are not doing all they can to protect their information. This is a clear call to action from the consumer to the business.

Don’t wait until your organization has become a victim to cyber threats. Experience the Hostway difference and request a free security consultation or contact a Hostway cloud hosting expert at 1.866.680.7556.