If you sell products or services online, then you need to offer secure payment systems to protect buyers’ sensitive data. Cybercriminals are looking for any opportunity to access this information, so it’s crucial that you use the best payment security tools at your disposal.
A secure payment system uses data encryption and other security methods to prevent unauthorized access. It can also help you comply with the strict payment card industry (PCI) rules that govern how merchants handle customer payment information. If you want to know whether a website is using a secure payment system, look for a lock icon in the browser window or a site address that begins with HTTPS.
What Are Secure Payments?
Secure payments are a set of practices that ensures your customers’ sensitive credit card and ACH (bank debit or direct deposit) data is protected. They include a variety of tools like AVS, tokenization, point-to-point encryption and others. These tools help keep criminals from stealing your customers’ personal information or exploiting your business’ fragile processing systems.
Using the best payment security measures is not optional, but it can be costly for small businesses. In fact, a single breach can put a small business out of business. That’s why it’s so important to follow the best payment security practices for your business, regardless of size.
To improve payment security, consider these tips:
1. Use a secure payment gateway.
Choosing a trusted payment gateway is the first step to safeguarding your buyers’ credit card and ACH data. Your payment processor can provide a PCI-compliant solution that helps you meet the strict requirements of the credit card industry. They can also help you implement other best practices for your business.
2. Authenticate every purchase.
Authentication is the process of verifying that the person making the purchase is actually the owner of the credit or debit card. It involves checking a number of different factors including IP address, device fingerprinting and geolocation, as well as consumer data from multiple sources and merchants. A good authentication system will flag suspicious or high-risk transactions and help you block them before they’re processed.
3. Verify the identity of all new customers.
Many fraudsters target small businesses, assuming they have less money and resources than larger organizations. In fact, according to Verizon’s 2022 data breach investigations report, smaller businesses are more likely to get hit by hackers and lose their revenue and reputation as a result. To reduce this risk, you can implement a verified-identity program that requires new customers to submit proof of identity before they’re allowed to make a payment.
4. Invest in predictive analytics, intelligence + insights.
To reduce the impact of fraud on the entire payments ecosystem, you need to do more than just have the right technology and security practices in place. You also need to actively monitor and respond to fraudulent activity. That means investing in predictive analytics and intelligence that detects and blocks malicious behavior, as well as educating consumers about ways to protect their data.