Finance & Economics

How to protect your online store

Simple ways to safeguard your business

How to protect your online store. Source:

We all constantly hear stories about dishonest sellers who do not send/deliver items after receiving payment, sell goods of poor quality, or merely cease to deliver the promised services. On the other hand, if you run an online store you should not forget about fraudulent customers that can pull off their scam schemes for profit. Moreover, your e-commerce site can be attacked by hackers and perpetrators, which can cause great losses to you and your business, and there are both moral and financial aspects we are talking about.

Let’s not forget that owners of online stores have a special responsibility: hundreds and thousands of people have trusted them with their payments and personal data. Use our tips.

Today PaySpace Magazine would consider the issues of e-commerce sites’ integrity and give suggestions on how to secure an online store.

Types of hack

Generally, there are two major types of hacks:

  • Targeted hack. This type of hack is typical for large online stores. It is hard to crack a single site from a scratch. Therefore, hackers will have to focus on errors and vulnerable searching, which is not so easy. The experts in this field (really professional ones) are quite expensive. Thus, small and medium-sized businesses are less likely to fall victim to a targeted hack.
  • Mass hack. This type of attack is not aimed at one particular store. Such hacks are usually aimed at sites that have the same kind of vulnerability in their software (apparently, sites that were built with the help of the same technology/framework). For example, hackers spotted a breach in a particular CMS. This would help them to successfully attack tens or even hundreds of sites (using similar technologies) at a time. And what’s interesting is that the entire process is usually automated. The same applies to sites with a spotted gap.

There are two major types of hacks. Source:

Why they hack online stores and what is that to me?

  1. Third-party link posting, advertising and spamming for the purpose of earning is a very popular reason for site hacks. Sometimes such a scam activity can go unnoticed, and the site owner has no idea that his online store is used by fraudsters for their own purposes.
  2. Receiving cash rewards from site owners. In contrast to the previous point, such hacks are usually immediately noticeable, since when a store owner tries to enter the site, they normally see a notification about an accomplished hack and instruction for further actions (an account for sending money and other related information).
  3. Personal data theft. This is one more possible scenario. A site can be cracked if somebody needs to steal clients’ personal data or harm a competitor’s business.

How to detect suspicious buyers

Not only hackers can damage your business. Quite often, e-commerce businessmen face a problem of fraudulent customers, who try to conduct scam actions. These are the tips, which can help you to detect scam activity:

And this is only a partial list. These tips are the most common causes of fraudulent activity, which is becoming more and more sophisticated.

Moreover, if you want to avoid unpleasant fraudulent situations, you have to be up-to-date with the latest criminal fraud tactics.

How to protect an online store?

You should know that it is virtually impossible to eliminate the “hack threat” completely. Nonetheless, it can be minimized through the implementation of the recommendations:

1. Change passwords regularly, and don’t forget to delete inactive users with administrator rights. Running an online business, you should make a habit of changing passwords once a month.

Combinations to avoid while choosing a password:

  • Character sets that are located adjacently on the keyboard layout (87654321, asdfgh, 1q2w3e, etc).
  • Any data that is somehow considered to be personal (first or second name, ID/driver’s license number, date of birth, etc).

Moreover, you can use password generators in order to save time and make sure your symbols set is a secure one.

Running an online business, you should make a habit of changing passwords once a month. Source:

What’s more, it is vital to have different passwords to different services, such as mail, hosting, domain, etc. It is extremely dangerous to use one password for all accounts.

2. Even if your password is stolen, you can still secure your account with the help of multi-factor authentication (most usually two-factor authentication).

Usually, entrepreneurs bind accounts to their mobile phone number. Thus, entering the service, you should enter login, password, and SMS (or particular app) one-time password.

3. Try to avoid entering your account from devices you don’t own. Especially if we are talking about internet cafes, coworkings, etc. Somebody can use your login and password if you are inattentive.

Somebody can use your login and password if you are inattentive. Source:

4. HTTPS is an extension of HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol), which provides secure communication over a network. All the data transmitted is encrypted, so a user’s personal information (name, card details, address, etc) is protected (in contrast to HTTP).

5. Website backup is a snapshot of all the website’s major elements, such as:

  • Code files;
  • Databases;
  • Images;
  • Plugins, themes, etc.

You should have it in the case of any kind of security compromise or malfunction.  Having a backup, a user ensures that they have a way to bring their site back without a need for rebuilding it from scratch.


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