Learn how to protect your business from the most common ecommerce security threats

A female business executive uses an iPad to update her company's ecommerce security.

Running a business is a time-consuming job, and managing security matters may not be your first priority. Between handling finances, shipping out orders, responding to customer needs, and more, security can easily become an afterthought.

But especially in today’s digital world, as technology has increased rapidly and cybercriminals have followed stealthily, security is of utmost importance. Ecommerce has opened your company to a global audience — but lurking in the shadows of that audience, there may be hackers, fraudsters, and other bad actors.

Most business leaders know about ecommerce security threats and have a general understanding of them, but many could use a reminder of the new and different types of threats to be on the lookout for. With good cyber habits and a scalable ecommerce platform, you’ll be able to sleep well at night knowing you’re keeping your business safe.

Types of threats to ecommerce

Ecommerce is the buying and selling of services and goods over the internet. Because ecommerce purchases are digital, hackers can easily access information from your business or your customers.

Ecommerce security is the protection of your online business assets from unauthorized outside entities. By having strong cyber hygiene and investing in secure services, you can prevent customer information leaks, phishing attacks, and credit card fraud.

There are many types of financial fraud, and it’s important to stop it before it occurs with preventative measures. While there are other resources that can be added to your digital infrastructure, starting with something as simple as a strong password can be the difference between a great day of sales and a costly data leak.

1. Financial fraud

Authentication — whether by password, PIN, or other methods — can prevent fraud from taking place on many ecommerce sites. However, due to the online nature of ecommerce, hackers are able to steal authentication credentials and information from customers, often by using spyware or viruses. Hackers can also make unauthorized transactions while erasing their trail, which causes businesses significant losses.

Fake refunds and returns are other common types of financial fraud. Refund fraud happens when businesses refund illegally acquired products or damaged goods. When handling financial information, it’s crucial to proactively monitor your digital infrastructure.

2. Payment conflicts

Another growing threat for ecommerce businesses is payment conflicts. While many websites have automated features, automation handles ecommerce payments for websites, not individuals.

Business platforms handle a large volume of payments, making them vulnerable to error. It's important to monitor automation to ensure that customers have not been overcharged. It’s better to double-check now than face the consequences later.

Ecommerce security means proactively protecting your cyberinfrastructure today to prevent disastrous harm down the road.

3. Phishing

Phishing is a technique where bad actors try to steal sensitive information via text, email, or other digital channel by pretending to be someone that they’re not. It’s one of the most common security threats. Hackers send emails or texts to numerous people, and the message usually contains a malware link. Malware will immediately begin downloading once clicked on, and hackers can then steal financial information. Fake websites are created to lure users into typing their personal information, only for hackers to steal it away.

You can take steps to protect your customers by educating them — as well as your employees — about clicking suspicious links. By keeping customers informed, you have a better chance of keeping cybercriminals out.

4. Skimming

Another top concern for ecommerce in 2022 has been the increase in skimming. Skimming occurs when cybercriminals introduce code onto ecommerce payment processing pages. This code can capture credit card data and personally identifiable information from users. Criminals then transfer stolen data to a domain under their control.

Skimming can be done by exploiting a vulnerability on a website, using a phishing email or text message to gain access to a user’s network, and many other ways of injecting malicious code. Hackers always have tricks up their sleeves to gain unauthorized access to your cyberinfrastructure, so monitoring your website is critical.

5. Distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks

A distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack is when a hacker floods a server with internet traffic to keep users from accessing online sites and services. There’s a wide variety of motivations for carrying out a DDoS attack. Some are done by individuals who wish to make a statement by exploiting cyber weakness or expressing disapproval of a company. Others are financially motivated — cybercriminals may attack a company and install ransomware on their servers, then force them to pay a large fine for the damage to be undone.

DDoS attacks can seriously hurt a company both in the short term and long term due to decreases in legitimate web traffic, business losses, and even reputation damage. It’s important that you secure your network to prevent these attacks. It can be easy to put cybersecurity on the back burner, but that just makes it easier for cybercriminals to cause damage.

Protect your business from ecommerce security threats

Managing a business takes time and effort. Installing security best practices may seem like an extra task among innumerable other business functions, but cybercriminals prey on weak infrastructures — so you can never be too cautious.

Ecommerce security means proactively protecting your cyber infrastructure today to prevent disastrous harm down the road. Monitor your site closely to defend against common security threats like financial fraud, payment conflicts, phishing, skimming, and DDoS attacks — as well as those that aren’t common yet but could be coming in the future.

Adobe Commerce can help manage your company’s modern security needs through flexible, scalable, and AI-powered commerce. The world’s leading digital commerce solution for merchants and brands, Adobe Commerce is built for enterprise on a scalable, open-source platform with a low cost of ownership, premium performance, and unparalleled security.

Learn more about achieving content at scale and personalized commerce with secure peace of mind.