As early as the 1980s, e-commerce was being used. The modern version we have today had humble beginnings in the mid-1990s.
Even though a lot has changed since then, one characteristic remains the same, which is that e-commerce sites are driven by reciprocal information sharing between merchants and customers.
Since, personally identifiable information is a highly sought-after commodity for threat actors, proprietors of e-commerce businesses should take extra care during the collection and storage of client information.
Importance Of Data Privacy
Every e-commerce business requires client data to drive its existence forward, whether it is an account that a customer must create to complete a purchase, or the recycling of sales information into valuable marketing analytics.
Your customers are trusting you to protect their identity every time they access your site. This trust relationship is key to building the compliance reputation of your online business.
Late adopters of online services are typically those who distrust the ability of e-commerce businesses to regulate and securely curate their information.
Data Privacy Best Practices
Learn And Understand What Is Expected Of Your Business
Depending on where your business is operated, various compliance standards might apply to it. Regulatory compliance is crucial to businesses that come under strict compliance scrutiny.
These are businesses in finance and healthcare, as well as in areas where customer privacy is essential to business sustainability and ensuring transparency of operations. You need to be aware of which compliance framework applies to your business.
Limit The Scope Of Information, You Decide To Curate
Apart from the disinclination of customers to share an exceeding amount of personal data, your e-commerce site should only ask for information that is necessary to perform the required online transaction.
Minimalizing the information, you collect from customers not only benefits your business because you have less information to curate, but it also builds a positive reputation for your business.
Implement Full Site Encryption
Site encryption can offer a great deal of protection and anonymity to your customers when they utilize your online service. This is achieved by enabling your site to run over HTTPS, rather than HTTP, and encrypting the session data being transmitted with a strong SSL certificate.
Protect Your Site Through Strong User Accounts
As far as the user security of your site is concerned, you should always utilize strong account authentication practices. Minimum strong passwords are always recommended.
By implementing additional measures such as reCAPTCHA and multifactor authentication, user accounts can be kept safe from discovery by threat actors.
Passwords should always be stored safely by hashing passwords when accounts are created on your site. By doing this, threat actors would not be able to view the credentials of all your user accounts in the case of a data breach.
Keep Your Platform And Security Plugins Up To Date
An e-commerce business cannot expect to remain safe if they do not keep its business platforms up to date. Updates, for the most part, are there to address issues relating to the platform that was discovered by the authors.
These issues sometimes include security vulnerabilities that need to be addressed as a matter of urgency. By not keeping your e-commerce platform and its associated plugin up to date, you might be exposing your client data to unnecessary risk.
Only Allow Employees Access To Information They Need
It might be tempting to give open access to all client data to all your employees, it would after all simplify administrative interactions between your clients and your employees.
The issue with unsegregated access to personally identifiable information is that your business could incur hefty fines. Employees only need access to the data they need to perform their tasks.
Client data protection needs to be one of the most important considerations when it comes to your e-commerce site.
Want to learn more on how to use a data warehouse for customer analysis? read it here for more details.
Every organization relies on data to function, and a business is responsible for protecting that data.
A data privacy specialist could advise and assist e-commerce businesses in achieving their data privacy goals. Litigation and reputational damage can result from any data breach, whether internal or external.
To learn more about data management, we also wrote about how to secure data rooms: your data, your business for your future reference. Goodluck!