At Xcelacore, we know how crucial payment security and an efficient POS (point of sale) system is to the success of any retail or ecommerce business. Having built custom POS systems and ecommerce platforms, our team of experts is well versed in the vulnerabilities they can possess and what it takes to ensure they are secure. As newsworthy data breaches crowd the airwaves and the busy holiday shopping season approaches, we’re delving into best practices for enhancing payment security.
Keep your software up-to-date. Lapses in software updates can leave your system vulnerable and open to threats. Make sure your system is always protected with the latest updates as it’s likely that these updates include reinforced security measures.
Encrypt sensitive information and secure your customers’ information. Protecting customer data is imperative. One way to do this is through encryption, a process that transforms information into a code that only authorized users can decode. End-to-end encryption ensures that sensitive data is encrypted at the moment the POS system receives the information and again at every stage of the transaction. For additional security on your website, use Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and Secure HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTPS) to protect your customers’ data when they interact with and make purchases on your site.
Only connect to a secure network. While it’s great customer service to offer free wifi in your establishment, it is not wise to connect your POS system to the same network. Prevent hackers from accessing your system remotely by connecting your POS to a private, secure network that is restricted to business critical activities only.
Closely monitor all POS activity and check for tampering. Bad actors could be anywhere, including on site. Make sure your devices are password protected and are physically secure in your space. It’s also important to routinely check devices for tampering. Unfamiliar wires, missing screws, or changes to external markings may all be red flags. Lastly, monitor all activity and flag any suspicious patterns.
Stay up-to-date on the latest fraud tactics. Fraudulent activity can appear in many different ways. Identity theft, exploitation of returns and refunds, and the opening of several accounts to take advantage of promotions are all examples of fraud. It’s crucial to monitor activity closely and to partner with a trusted payment processor to prevent losses due to fraud.
Provide secure customer logins. Don’t let gaps in your security allow hackers and fraudsters to gain access to your customers’ information. Use tools like MultiFactor Authorization (MFA), CAPTCHA (Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart), and IP address verification to validate that your customers are actually your customers.
Always maintain PCI compliance. Retail, restaurant, and ecommerce businesses maintain PCI (Payment Card Industry) Compliance by adhering to a set of strict protocols related to handling customer payment information. These requirements aim to ensure these businesses maintain a secure environment for sensitive information. Requirements include many of the best practices listed above in addition to physically securing payment information if applicable, maintaining the proper records and access logs, and documenting and maintaining an information security policy.
Enlist the help of cybersecurity experts. Cybersecurity testing is a critical component of identifying weaknesses in the security of your systems. Experts can execute Penetration and Vulnerability Testing to mimic cyber attacks and narrow in on weak spots. From there, weaknesses and vulnerabilities can be mitigated to further strengthen your security.
It is never too late to improve the security of your payment systems. Xcelacore’s team of experts can help. Contact us today to improve your cybersecurity or to build an ecommerce site or POS system that best fits your business needs.