More than likely, you’ve already taken a few steps to ensure the safety of your small online business. You might use a standard virus scanner or cleanup app to check every computer you have connected to your firm’s network. There’s a chance you’ve even double-checked the type of data you’re collecting and where it’s currently stored. Nevertheless, you probably still feel like you could be doing more.
Try out these tips if you’d like to secure your business in hurry.
1) Change Your Passwords Often
You probably hear this one quite often, but that doesn’t change how important it is. Make sure you’ve set secure passwords on every account your employees have to log into, so you won’t risk anything being leaked due to a cracker guessing your credentials. Consider adding a non-keyboard Unicode character to make seldom-used passwords extra secure, and make sure to change all of them on a regular basis.
2) Enable HTTPS on All Your Pages
Perhaps you’ve noticed that when you visit certain sites, your browser shows a small padlock icon. This indicates that you’re securely connected to a remote server using HTTPS technology. In many cases, you can enable this by checking a single box in your server’s administration panel.
This will ensure that all transactions are encrypted on both ends, which is especially important if you accept payments via credit card. While HTTPS is by no means perfect, it’s a major step up from using an unencrypted HTTP connection. Insecure sites rank poorly in search engine results, so enabling HTTPS might even help attract new clients.
3) Learn How to Recognize Online Frauds
Obviously fraudulent emails and customer orders are so easy to spot. They’ll usually be off topic and may contain a verbatim copy of something completely irrelevant to the topic of the message. Parts of these kinds of messages are often gibberish as well, which is designed to defeat online spam filters. Regardless of what tips you off, you’re probably already pretty good when it comes to spotting blatant frauds.
Unfortunately, eCommerce sites are now being targeted by much more sophisticated scams that can produce requests for sensitive information that look like they were sent by legitimate sources. These are especially a problem for those who make a great deal of B2B sales, making endpoint detection very important..
Ask yourself the following questions when looking at an online request:
- Does the request come from a large enterprise-level company your firm normally wouldn’t receive requests from?
- Do they ask for social security numbers or any other details that wouldn’t normally be necessary for making an online transaction?
- Do they mention using any form of cryptocurrency? Keep in mind, of course, that legitimate offers might make mention of this if you run a blockchain-based business online.
- Does the request allegedly come from the IRS or any other tax agency that would normally contact you via another method?
If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then the request might very well be fraudulent.
Doing Business Online Safely
In spite of what some news outlets might have you believe, there’s no reason to live in terror if you’re doing business online. Just make sure to follow these three basic tips and educate everyone in your organization about staying safe online. That alone should help to deflect an overwhelming majority of threats.