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How Retail Cybersecurity Is Changing

Cybersecurity

The stiff competition and the penetration of technology in the retail industry have seen retailers and organizations move to the cloud and utilize big data. While the move helps improve customer experience, it also exposes the industry to cybersecurity threats. Despite the security measures to combat these threats, cybercriminals continue to develop advanced threats to stay ahead of any security measures.

As a retailer, you have a responsibility to protect the consumer data you collect from your customers. But with the ever-growing number of threats, it can be hard to keep up with the pace. Familiarizing yourself with the possible cybersecurity threats can help plan and defend your network against any attack attempts. 

Possible Cybersecurity Threats to Lookout For

As a retailer, you have an obligation to monitor your computer’s cyberhealth and enhance your point-of-sale security. These two contain a lot of sensitive information that hackers would be interested in. some of the possible cybersecurity threats you need to be on the lookout for include:

Point of Entry through the Internet of Things (IoT)

IoT helps improve the overall in-store computer connectivity and data transfer. For example, retail enables you to offer automated checkout, track your merchandise, and track and analyze your customer’s behavior.

Unfortunately, hackers have found ways to intercept this valuable tech to expand their digital attacks. They do this by using IoT to enter your network and spy on you or steal your data. To avoid attacks through IoT, ensure that your devices are running the latest security patches. You should also train your employees about the risk and how it can affect your business. 

Phishing

Under this threat, an attacker sends fraudulent emails to your employees. The emails look so real, and when an employee interacts with such an email, it gives an attacker access to your network. Once inside your network, the cybercriminal can access all sensitive information, including customer details and financial information.

In fact, digital currency wallets have been a prime target for these types of attacks due to the boom in cryptocurrency prices over the last few years. Named MEWKit, by cybersecurity firm RiskIQ, the phishing campaign directed wallet customers to an exact replica of MyTherWallet’s website to steal credentials. At the same time, they deployed what the scheme’s authors called an “automated transfer system, to use the captured credentials and transfer funds.

To prevent the threat, you need to be vigilant about employee cybersecurity awareness through training. Educating your employees about phishing helps them stay alert and report any suspicious emails they may receive.

Botnets

Hackers take control of a network by infecting several computers with malware. The malware makes the affected computers perform a series of repetitive tasks that overwhelm the entire network. As a result, your organization suffers from operation inefficiency. During this time, the attackers can carry out malicious activities such as stealing data, choking your bandwidth, and blocking your online shopping carts.

To overcome the threat, your network administrator needs to monitor the network continuously. Any sign of botnet should prompt the IT team to run a deep scan on the affected computers to remove the malware. The team should also ensure that all devices connected to your network are running in the latest security updates. 

Supply Chain Attacks

Having an effective supply chain network improves the overall customer experience and the reputation of your organization. However, the entire supply chain network can be under malicious attack if there’s a weakness in any third-party vendor’s network within your supply chain. Attackers can use the weakness to enter and cause havoc within the entire supply chain network.

You can prevent this type of attack through a third-party risk management program. The program allows your IT team to gain visibility of the entire supply chain network. The access gives them the ability to detect any possible threats and stop them before an attack occurs.

Overcoming the Threats

In addition to adopting the latest technology for your retail business, you also need to practice safe cybersecurity measures such as:

Practicing End-to-End Visibility and Control of Your Network

This helps you maintain PCI compliance, achieve network proficiency, and keep up with the prevailing data privacy regulations. In addition, ensure that your IT team gains complete visibility of the entire network from an early stage and grows as the network expands. 

Regularly Monitoring and Responding to Threats

Ensure that your network security team has implemented proactive threat intelligence that helps them respond quickly and efficiently to threats.

Deploy a Secure SD-Branch Solution

Doing this improves your network security and increases its performance through a secure SD-WAN. 

Bottom Line

As a retailer, you must embrace the evolving nature of technology as it goes hand-in-hand with the ever-changing customer expectation. Failure to keep up puts you at risk of falling behind, or worse, losing your business. But as you adopt these new and profitable changes, you also fall victim to cybersecurity threats. As your retail network becomes complex, so are the risks presented to your business.

By practicing the above measures, you can secure your retail business from possible cybersecurity threats. These measures may feel overwhelming at first, but if you consider the losses they save you from, you’ll realize that they’re worth investing in.

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Allen is a qualified writer and a blogger, who loves to dabble with and write about technology. While focusing on and writing on tech topics, his varied skills and experience enables him to write on any topic related to tech which may interest him. You can contact him at allen@pc-tablet.com.