10 Cybersecurity Tips & Strategies for Retailers during the Holiday Season & Beyond

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement and magic of the holiday shopping season. There are only a few days before it officially kicks off. This is especially true if your business expects to make a lot of money from holiday shoppers. Many retailers use Cyber Monday, Small Business Saturday, Black Friday and Cyber Monday to drive business. They offer shoppers special deals. Record numbers were achieved during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend 2018, with $6.22 Billion in online Black Friday sales, $18 Billion in Small Business Saturday sales and 7.9 Billion on Cyber Monday. The responsibility of protecting the data of shoppers is something many people don’t enjoy. What can they do when there were record numbers of online retail data breaches in 2018 for retailers? Unfortunately, cybersecurity is not an area merchants can afford to ignore.

If you have not been taking a holistic approach towards security, now is a good time to plan and resolve for 2020.

Here are 10 cybersecurity strategies and tips for retailers this holiday season and beyond. *
Two-factor authentication (2FA), for online platform passwords, is recommended. Passwords should be encrypted and hashed. Do not allow guest checkouts. This feature is available from a surprising number of online retailers. Only allow secure connections. Secure data should not be stored. Use strong encryption. Set up alerts based upon activity, transaction volume, and volume. Require credit card and address verification. Surprisingly, many platforms and sites do not require CVV. Many agencies are experts in this area. Have a clear disaster recovery plan in place to restore the systems in the event of an attack that disables the primary system. Ask your hosting partner or solution provider to send you a copy of their disaster response plan. IT and cybersecurity are distinct functions that should be treated as such.
Carey D’Souza is the CEO of Sonikpass. In a recent Cisco Blog post, he cautioned that “Don’t expect your IT admins to also take care cybersecurity.” To focus solely on this, hire a security analyst. Retailers are always at risk from hackers. You can only stay ahead or protected by constantly updating and upgrading your IT infrastructure and cybersecurity policies.

Businesses should make cybersecurity a priority in today’s digital world. This is why they need to dedicate resources specifically to detect and contain cyber-threats. IE can help you identify gaps in your cybersecurity plan and with vulnerability management. Learn more about our security solutions.