Cybersecurity Threats Faced By Retailers

Building customer trust is the foremost requisite of any retail institution. This is because the customer is the king and the business is because of the customer. This building of customer trust and maintenance has been very smooth in the past, without any disturbances.

But in the new digital era of emerging technologies, all of this is taking a new meaning. There are now many forces acting and addressing each force has become a necessity, in order not to compromise the sensitive customer information as well as build customer trust. A good example is the HBSwiss – a new trading software that wins its’ place in the traders hearts with security and reliability.

Cybercrime is a big business and retailers a major target

A notable shift is the recognition of the fact that cybersecurity threats are major risk factors for retailers. Hackers and cyber criminals have discovered that the interface between the customer and the retailer is where the money is. So, right from the physical point-of-sale to the e-commerce gateway, the retail enterprise and its supply chain along with the customer endpoint, there isavulnerability in all fronts.

Hackers are devising ways and means to get into the system and do away with potentially sensitive information of millions of customers worldwide. Retail institutions have always been a soft target and cybercrime continues to flourish despite some of the stringent security measures in place.

Especially in the aftermath of the cable gate leaks, cyber security has become a major issue for many, including big retail institutions. When WikiLeaks released the Cable gate documents, even institutions like MasterCard, Visa, and PayPal, saw their sites hampered to some extent by online cyber attackers.

Most of these cyberattacks happen through the malware which is implanted through outside attack or intrusion through thepoint of sale systems and targeted attacks on the point of sale system.

Security threats faced by retailers

  • The role of the insider’s element can never be ruled out. In fact, in most of the cyber-attacks that have come to the forefront, an insider’s role has been clearly established. Recognizing the loopholes in the system and using it one’s advantage is something that can be expected from a person with criminal intent. Not only current employees but also former employees are capable of inflicting damages and attacking the security of an institution.
  • The retail business ecosystem brings with itself a number of people. And any third party service provider or a business partner has access to some confidential data of the company. This is another risk factor that cannot be ruled out.
  • The point of sale forms a major risk factor for security and data breaches. Credit card data is something that cybercriminals thrive on and this is the point where they see a great deal of money. Due to the gap in the point of sale security system, retail institutions are prone to many attacks.
  • The vulnerability of the software systems and the browsers also contribute to some amount of risk. Older operating systems in use and malicious malware that are more susceptible to threats are some of the other risks that these retailers face.

Establishing IT governance along with neutralizing third-party risk, with an innovative and futuristic approach to cyber security can mitigate the risk for the retail industry.