Protecting your customers from getting scammed online is paramount today.
It can have a devastating impact on the reputation of your business and on the trust that your customers have in you. According to the Insurance Information Institute, incidents of fraud and exposed shopper data have increased by 68% by 2020 for a reason.
As commerce becomes more digitized, so does the practice of violating the integrity and legality of transactions. Certainly, there's a lot to lose when you think of all the information that can be breached.
It's a risk you can't afford to take.
To help, here are five key tips for protecting your customers from online fraud. From implementing security checks to training your employees to recognize online fraud, these measures can help you ensure the safety of your customers and the reputation of your business.
If armoring your business and your customers is part of what you've set out to do in 2023, then you've come to the right place. Ready to swim the deep end? Let's dive in!
Did you know that loyalty scam is one of the most common forms of fraud in 2023? Because it's about profits, not money per se, criminals can gain access to your customers' accounts by impersonating them and using stolen credentials and go unnoticed. To avoid this, implement:
Secure authentication system: this can include verifying email, phone number, mailing address, or even actual identity using an online identity verification tool
Set reward limits: to prevent fraudsters from getting too many rewards. Limits should be clearly defined and communicated to users
It’s also important to keep track of the rewards awarded and how they are used by customers to detect suspicious activity. Read Seon's article for more insight into this type of fraud, which often occurs under the radar.
There’s no greater peace of mind than knowing that your customers can safely browse your site. There are several security systems you can implement to do this:
Fraud detection: use algorithms and machine learning techniques to identify patterns of suspicious activity
Security certification, such as the SSL security seal: this seal indicates that your website has been evaluated and meets certain security standards
Identity verification: you can ask users to verify their identity by sending a copy of their ID card or passport. This process can be automated using facial or fingerprint recognition systems to improve hidden registration detection
Activity monitoring: keep a detailed record of customer activity on your website and monitor for unusual activity
Data encryption: is used to protect sensitive information, such as passwords and credit card numbers, during transmission. Always use encryption to protect your customers' information
These are just some of the security options you can use to ensure that they can move around your store with reliability. Choosing the right security solution depends on your specific needs and the level of risk you are willing to take.
3. Have a standardized strategy for verifying and validating
A solid IT audit strategy includes ongoing security testing of your systems. You can do this by:
Perform scheduled tests: to ensure that your system remains secure and that there are no vulnerabilities that can be exploited by hackers
Penetration testing: simulates a real-world attack on your system to find vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit. Attempts to find weaknesses in authentication systems, customer data handling, and payment processing
Vulnerability testing: identifies known vulnerabilities in your systems and applications, such as security flaws or configuration issues. These tests can be performed by automated tools or by IT security professionals
Stress testing: simulates a large amount of traffic to evaluate the ability of your systems to handle high workloads. This can help identify performance and security issues on your eCommerce platform
Compliance testing: assesses whether your eCommerce platform meets security and compliance standards, such as the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS)
Keep your systems up to date: software updates are critical to keeping your systems secure and preventing potential attacks
There are a number of tests you can perform on a scheduled basis. By taking steps in advance, you can identify unusual activity before it becomes a headache for you and your customers.
Your employees are always at the forefront of your company's operations and are the ones who keep an eye on your website's activities. Training them on scams, in terms of detection and maneuvers to be performed, will put you on top of any suspicious situation. As for this:
Train your employees about the different types of online fraud: it’s important that your team understands the different types of online fraud, such as phishing scams, identity theft, and credit card fraud. You can provide online or in-person training
Train your employees to spot unusual purchase patterns: such as large purchases made at odd times or from unknown IP addresses. If your employees notice an unusual purchasing pattern, they should notify the security team
Establish verification procedures for large purchases: this could include a phone call to the customer or identity verification through an additional security question
Set transaction limits: if someone tries to make several large transactions in a short period of time, it may be an indicator of suspicious activity. Setting transaction limits will help prevent someone from making a fraudulent purchase
Establish protocols for handling sensitive information: such as credit card numbers: ensure that all employees are trained on best practices for handling sensitive information and establish clear protocols for handling this information
Establishing a culture of security awareness training within your organization is vital. This means making security a priority and fostering a culture where all employees feel responsible for their customers' security.
Encourage employees to report suspicious activity and recognize their good work.
Fighting online fraud is a community effort. While you work for and on behalf of your customers, it is critical that you involve them in the process and that they know where to stay out of the way and what to do when things go wrong. To do this, you must:
Provide clear and detailed information about your privacy and security policies on your website: how their information is handled and how online transactions are protected
Teach them how to recognize fraudulent emails and text messages: if a customer receives a suspicious email or text message, it’s important that they know how to recognize it and that they should not provide any personal or financial information
Provide information on the different types of online scams: including phishing attacks, fake websites, pyramid schemes, and money transfer scams
Provide recommendations on how to create strong passwords and how to update them regularly: they should be unique, long, and complex. Customers should also be encouraged to change their passwords on a regular basis
Encourage customers to use a credit card rather than a debit card for online purchases: credit cards offer greater protection against fraud and unauthorized transactions
Provide information about the different security systems you use on your site: for example, if you use an address verification system, make sure customers know that this is an anti-fraud measure
Remind them to always check their bank and credit card statements to make sure there are no unauthorized charges: they should report them immediately to their bank or credit card company
Provide clear and detailed information about privacy and security. This as well as specific recommendations to help your customers protect themselves if they have the slightest suspicion that their transaction with your company is going the wrong way.
Greater security, greater peace of mind
As you may have noticed, protecting your customers from electronic fraud requires concrete, concise, and results-oriented steps. So let's review:
Prevent loyalty frauds: identify risk points, implement a secure authentication system, and set reward limits
Use a reliable security system: to ensure that customers can navigate the site safely
Have a standardized verification and validation strategy: this is essential to ensure that the system remains secure and that there are no vulnerabilities that can be exploited by hackers. Therefore, several types of scheduled tests need to be performed
Train employees to recognize suspicious activity: and establish clear protocols for handling sensitive information. For example, employees can identify unusual purchasing patterns and establish verification procedures for large purchases
Show customers how they are protected is essential to building trust in the site: provide clear and detailed information about the site's privacy and security policies, and teach customers how to spot fraudulent activity
By following these five steps, you can help keep those who drive your business safe at all times. Online security is a constant challenge, but being prepared will keep you ahead of the game. Don't waste any time, get started on your cybersecurity journey now - it's a one-way street!
Guillermo is a Venezuelan SEO content writer currently living between Uruguay and Argentina. He is currently a head content writer for Skale. His articles have reached more than two million people across the Americas. He is a firm believer in love, dulce de leche and Kelly Clarkson.