Cybersecurity challenges facing retailers

Currently, digital networks are a necessity to all retail operations. That makes them a suitable target for hackers. Vodat International member, major cybersecurity challenges facing retailers. Furthermore, he suggests possible solutions to these cybersecurity threats.

Retailers are expected to have data and in-store data networks. These networks are to be used in managing vital business data. For instance;

  • Purchase transactions
  • Customer personal details
  • Merchandise
  • Promotions
  • Healthy and safety alarms
  • Stock

Securing this data curbs any unauthorized access. If that is not the case, the following threats are bound to occur;

Insecure Wi-Fi Networks

A lot of organizations have Wi-Fi connection in their premises. This provision boosts connectivity EPOS system and employees evices. The connection will enable the company to easily monitor their sales. Furthermore, Wi-Fi can be used to access various productive apps. These apps are beneficial to the success of the company. For instance, office payroll apps, for making payslips.

However, Wi-Fi networks are a target for cybercriminals. These self-centered individuals can hack into insecure Wi-Fi networks. While there, they will disrupt transactions and access all the company’s confidential information. Furthermore, they can run a distributed denial of service attack. This malicious attack tends to stop trading activities. The hacker may also set up temporary and fake Wi-Fi hotspots. Company staff and customers may connect to this network, as the hacker gathers important information.

Unstable POS security

An EPOS system records most transactions carried out electronically. This information is of great relevance to the company. Since a company can make vital decisions out of this data.

A weak EPOS system invites hackers. The hackers will first corrupt the system with a malware. This is a very easy process for them, and it will not take a lot of time. Considering retailers, IT professionals and customers operate from different areas, makes it easier to hack. Hackers might also decide to hack into the company’s online server.

Once in the EPOS systems, a dangerous malware is released. This malware will gather customer’s credit and debit cards information. Then this information is used to steal from customers.

However, a company can secure their EPOS system to curb that occurrence. That can be done through the following means;

  • Encryption-Customer credit details can be encrypted by the company

It has to be done immediately card details get into and leave the POS device. This approach curbs any possible customer details vulnerability.

  • Installation of an antivirus software

Hackers uses malware to corrupt the EPOS system. The antivirus scans all apps and files making quick alerts in case of threats.

  • Secure EPOS terminals

Cyber criminals usually hack into these terminals to harness customer data. By securing the EPOS terminals, you lock out any unnecessary access.

EPOS functional system architecture

Doubtful network configuration

It is hard to have a 100% secure and stable network configuration. However, secure network configurations can be installed to protect data. Remember, hackers start with easy to hack systems, for instance, vulnerable Wi-Fi. Then they can use a phishing email to get confidential logins credentials. They will use these credentials to get into the EPOS system.

Insufficient staff training

Despite having secure network configurations, cyber-attack can still come by. This attack usually targets employees who are not well versed with cybercrime. The hacker will send a phishing email to the company email. This feat gifts the hacker with the necessary credentials to hack into the company’s systems.

It is very important for companies to train their staff. The training should equip them with skills in identifying cybercriminals and activities. Once they discover any cybercrime attempt, they should raise an alarm. This ensures the technical team quickly deals with this torment at hand. Furthermore, the training will inform employees how to identify a phishing email.

Lost mobile phones and laptops can be used by hackers to perform malicious activities. For instance, accessing the confidential data of the organization. Then manipulating this information to steal from the company. Company laptops should be equipped with security measures to forever protect vital information. Same applies to mobile phones.

Conclusion

Cyber-attacks are bound to happen at any time. Therefore, every company needs to be on their toes always. They need to put in place all the necessary data protection measures and secure their EPOS system. The company should also train their employees for them to be vigilant.

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