2021 Online Marketplace eCommerce Checklist: Security

Table of Contents

What eCommerce Security Threats Will Impact Your Business?

How has your eCommerce solution been handling threats? Have you experienced downtime, malware, or other security threats in the past year? If not, you can be sure it will happen. Did you know that eCommerce businesses experience more than32.4% of all threats that are successful breaches?

How would you handle a breach? Will you lose customer data? Losing personally identifiable data during a breach can cost you your entire business. At a minimum, you will lose customer trust and loyalty and pay enormous fines for non-compliance.

To prevent such threats to your valuable business, it starts with understanding the types of threats used against eCommerce businesses.

Main Types of eCommerce Attacks

A successful breach of your system can come at you from any angle. It can come from emails, websites, text messages, or even your employees. It would be better to discover ways to block attacks that could becoming at you from any direction. Before you can stop the attacks, you need to think more like a hacker and discover the many ways that they will use to get into your data. Social engineering attacks represent about 80% of all security problems. Get familiar with the top social engineering types of security breaches.

  1. Phishing – Phishing attacks are most common through deceptive emails, fake websites, and initiated text messages. It’s a type of attache when someone pretends to be person or business you already know.
  2. Spear Phishing – It’s same phishing but more selectively targeted towards an individual or business.
  3. Baiting – Baiting is straightforward, a false offer for a reward or a purchase used simply to lure the user into divulging confidential data.
  4. Malware – It is an all-encompassing term to describe trojans, worms, viruses, and other harmful software that hackers use to gain access to your system.
  5. Pre-texting – This is a type of lure sent in a text to a mobile device that causes the receiver to contact the hacker or give out personal data.
  6. Quid Pro Quo – This usually involves a direct offer of payment to an individual in exchange for access to company systems.
  7. Tailgating – Tailgating is also known as piggybacking, is an actual physical breach of your facility or office when a person follows another with access into the premises for malicious intent.
  8. Vishing – Vishing is a fraud tactic that tries to get individuals to reveal personal data or other information over the phone; it can be carried out by voice email, smartphone, VoIP, or even a landline phone.
  9. Water-Holing – Water-holing is defined as a social engineering attack that takes advantage of the trust users give to websites they regularly visit.

The Top 10 Technical Problems of eCommerce

When putting together your eCommerce security best practices policy for your employees to follow, it should include some primary education on the types of threats that face the business—simply giving instructions to 'never do something' doesn't impact employees and educating them as to why they are given these instructions.

Your company's cybersecurity starts inside the business.

Beyond educating your employees on your eCommerce security policy, you also need to be aware of the actions and reputations of all third-party businesses that you exchange information with.

Take a hard look at your service level agreements or SLAs to understand what guarantees your company has inputting data in their hands.

  1. Do they compensate you for lost data?
  2. What are their company privacy and security policies?
  3. Do they align with yours?

For both your company and those who provide services to your business, what additional protections are being taken for administrators – those employees who have greater access than others. Are you working on a VPN? It is one of many tools that can help cut down on lost data. Many studies show the time it takes to detect a breach is more than 200 days typically, it is seen by external parties rather than internal administrators.

Another way to have added protection to your systems is the use of two-factor authorization keys or 2FA. Two-factor authentication is an electronic validation method in which employees or users have two or more keys assigned to them for access.

Now armed with a basic knowledge of threats that could occur to your eCommerce marketplace, learning about the technical problems that could happen to leave your system vulnerable is essential. Here are more details on the top ten technical issues that your company may encounter. Knowing more information on these risks can help you avoid many e-commerce security threats.

Top Ten Tech Security Risks for eCommerce

  1. Injection – Injection flaws create a security vulnerability that allows users to access the backend database, shell command, or operating system call with user input.
  2. Sensitive Data Exposure –Sensitive data can be composed of personally identifiable information (PII), Social Security numbers, banking information, or login credentials and should be protected from exposure.
  3. Broken Authentication – The session management status can allow unscrupulous individuals access to passwords, keys, or session tokens.
  4. Broken Access Control – Problems can occur when restrictions on authenticated users are not enforced. One type of access control problem that arises often is when the administrative interface is attacked.
  5. XML External Entities – XML external entity injection (XXE) is known as a web security vulnerability in which a hacker gains access to interfere with an application's processing of XML data.
  6. Insecure Deserialization – Deserialization can be used to harm your eCommerce business through replay attacks, injection attacks, and privilege escalation attacks.
  7. Insufficient Logging & Monitoring – This technical issue allows attackers to be persistent, impact more systems, and tamper, extract, or destroy data.
  8. Using Vulnerable Components – When you use components with known vulnerabilities, you put your company's data at risk;  an attack like this can cause severe data loss or server takeover.
  9. Security Misconfiguration – This results from insecure default configurations, incomplete or ad hoc configurations, open cloud storage, disorganized HTTP headers, or error messages containing sensitive data.
  10. Cross-Site Scripting – Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) can cause many types of e-commerce security risks that can range in severity.


In today’s world, businesses across the globe cite cybersecurity and information security their number one concern for the security of their business. It takes more than an IT team. A data breach can seriously impact the success of a business.

In the US, a data breach today costs an average of $8.19 million. For smaller businesses, this could mean closing doors. If you want to grow your company, invest in the trust of your customers, then protect it.

Provide continuous education and training for all employees in the area of information security. Make security your number one concern to protect your business today and in the future.

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