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Starting 2014: Insights on online payment security

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By: NMK Created on: January 20th, 2014
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It is no surprise that the payment security aspect has always been associated with quite serious issues in the global online commerce industry, and customers’ worries, that their credit card number could be stolen, were frequently justified. By Anton Ruin.

By Anton Ruin

 

Fortunately, data protection technologies have got far ahead with time and it has now become much safer to make online purchases. However, the occasional cases of fraudulence or credit card number thefts, for example, prove that there is still much to improve, regarding provided online payment security.


Even though many crucial upgrades in digital encoding mechanisms and algorithms, aimed at the elimination of online data fraudulence, took place back in 2013, this year’s issues, related to e-commerce payment security, are not likely to lessen in either their number, or the amount of harm they can cause.

 

Achieved Improvements


Undoubtedly, one of the most urgent problems in e-commerce is associated with the cases of customers’ data theft. In fact, some skeptics may even claim that world’s online hackers become craftier as fast as the reputable companies update their fraudulence detection algorithms and data protection methods.

 

At the same time, the latest research results reveal that the state of things is not as bad as it may seem.  In fact, some of the upgrades and changes, implemented by world’s e-merchants and financial companies, like Visa, have substantially decreased the possibility of e-shoppers’ actual money loss.

 

In this respect, the most effective measures include the usage of innovative technological solutions and tactics, aimed at the minimization of harm, caused by financial data breach of any kind. Even if many customers’ credit card numbers are stolen simultaneously, for example, the developed mechanisms track the breach and lock these cards, until the problem is resolved.


Remaining Challenges

 

Unlike the mentioned positive changes in the online payment security aspect, there are still many challenges in e-commerce these days. One of them is related to hacking consumers’ login and password credentials, used for shopping online, for a purpose of stealing money from their bank accounts.


Unfortunately, such kind online fraudulence is almost impossible to eliminate even today, at least if e-shoppers are not willing to so to say “join the fight” for online payment safety and follow helpful recommendations from world's experts. In particular, the key tips, which enable online consumers to lower risks of their money loss, presuppose:


- Choice of complex passwords, which will be harder to crack.

- Opting for varied login/password credentials for different e-shopping sites.

- Avoiding the usage of a “remember password” or an “auto-fill” option in web-browsers.

 

Of course, it is also crucial to avoid clicking on any links in e-mails, sent from unknown, spam sources, as they often contain viruses, worms and other kinds of malware.


Mobile Commerce Specifics

 

Undoubtedly, the total number of people, who shop online using their PCs and laptops has increased to an incredible extent within the past years, which allows speaking about the sufficient level of consumers' trust and confidence that their money is protected. At the same time, mobile shopping options still seem less safe for many customers worldwide, and the reasons of their skepticism are versatile.

 

According to recently conducted surveys, many people avoid using their mobile devices to buy goods and services mostly because their smartphones or tablets might be stolen, and the hackers may then get access to their bank accounts. Additionally, many respondents are afraid that they may lose the money, if Internet connection is aborted, while payment for their purchase is being transferred. After all, some customers simply are not ready to change their habits and try out new m-shopping options.


However, most analysts admit that the cases of fraudulence and money theft in mobile commerce do not outnumber those on display Web. If a person selects a unique complex password for m-commerce sites and does not use either an “auto-fill” or a "remember password" option, it is possible to minimize the probability of losing one's funds. Certainly, it is also recommended to ignore spam e-mails or clicking on any strange links from unknown m-commerce companies, even if a click will supposedly give a discount, a special offer, etc.


In a whole, it is clear that the global e-commerce industry is still ascending and will definitely evolve further in 2014. Similarly, the applied payment security and data protection technologies, as analysts predict, will become more sophisticated this year. Naturally, such positive trends will enable e-commerce companies to attract and engage more customers, especially the so-called "cautious" audience segments, easier and increase their revenue, as a result.

About the author

Anton Ruin is CEO of Epom (http://epom.com/).

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