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eCommerce has forever revolutionized the way business is done. Retail has now a long way from the days of physical transactions that were time consuming and prone to errors.
However, eCommerce has unavoidably invited its share of trouble makers. As much as eCommerce simplifies transactions, it is occasionally plagued by serious concerns that jeopardize its security as a medium of exchanging money and information.
Major threats to present day eCommerce include
Breach of Security:
eCommerce services are about transactions, and transactions are very largely driven by money. This attracts hackers, crackers and everyone with the knowledge of exploiting loopholes in a system. Once a kink in the armor is discovered, they feed the system(and users) with numerous bits of dubious information to extract confidential data(phishing). This is particularly dangerous as the data extracted may be that of credit card numbers, security passwords, transaction details etc.
Also, Payment gateways are vulnerable to interception by unethical users. Cleverly crafted strategies can sift a part or the entire amount being transferred from the user to the online vendor.
Hackers often gain access to sensitive information like user accounts, user details, addresses, confidential personal information etc. It is a significant threat in view of the privileges one can avail with a false identity.
For instance, one can effortlessly login to an online shopping mart under a stolen identity and make purchases worth thousands of dollars. He/she can then have the order delivered to an address other than the one listed on the records. One can easily see how those orders could be received by the impostor without arousing suspicion. While the fraudsters gains, the original account holder continues to pay the price until the offender is nabbed.
Threats to the system
Viruses, worms, Trojans are very deceptive methods of stealing information. Unless a sound virus-protection strategy is used by the eCommere Solutions firm, these malicious agents can compromise the credibility of all eCommerce web solution services. Often planted by individuals for reasons known best to them alone, viruses breed within the systems and multiply at astonishing speeds. Unchecked, they can potentially cripple the entire system.
There is but one solution to all issues that at times dent the security of eCommerce services. Strict vigil on malicious intruders.
Easier said than done? So is every preventive measure. However, with online transactions, progress in security has been overwhelming.
Most notable are the advances in identification and elimination of non-genuine users. Ecommerce service designers now use multi-level identification protocols like security questions, encrypted passwords(Encryption), biometrics and others to confirm the identity of their customers. These steps have found wide favor all around due to their effectiveness in weeding out unwelcome access.
The issue of tackling viruses and their like has also seen rapid development with anti-virus vendors releasing strong anti-viruses. These are developed by expert programmers who are a notch above the hackers and crackers themselves.
Firewalls are another common way of implementing security measures. These programs restrict access to and from the system to pre-checked users/access points.
eCommerce is run primarily by users. Thus, eCommerce service providers have also turned to educating users about safe practices that make the entire operation trouble free. Recent issues like phishing have been tackled to a good extent by informing genuine users of the perils of publishing their confidential information to unauthorized information seekers.