Cyber Security Advice for Your Business
“A big subject that has been in the news a great deal recently. To help you protect yourself and your business website; here are some aspects to consider along with a few pearls of wisdom regarding your online security …
Have you ever heard of a DDoS Attack?
Hackers can attack online retailers in a number of ways, one of which is a DDoS attack. DDoS, or distributed denial of service. This is a type of cyberattack in which a hacker floods your retail website with traffic and overwhelms your server to the point that your legitimate customers are unable to access your site.
DDoS attacks can last anywhere from a few hours to a few days; meanwhile, your company loses out on business and may incur the cost of bringing in an IT specialist to investigate and stop the attack.
Can You Prevent a DDoS Attack?
Although DDoS attacks often occur on larger brand online retailers, no retailer is immune. Small and medium sized companies that rely on larger e-commerce providers or payment processing companies could be affected if those larger companies come under attack.
Mitigate the DDoS Risk
To mitigate some of the DDoS risk, it is important to understand your Web hosting environment. Some examples of Web hosting include:
• Shared hosting. When multiple websites share a single server. This is the most common and economical option for small companies, as the host already has a DDoS response plan in place.
• Cloud hosting. This is a newer platform where the hosting is decentralised and users are only charged for the services they use, not a flat fee.
• In-house hosting. A company, such as a larger online retailer, hosts its own site and assumes all of the responsibility for a DDoS attacks.
Many small and medium sized online retailers use shared hosting because they don’t have the capability to host their own site. When selecting a Web hosting service, consider the following:
• Does the hosting company only cater to e-commerce clients, or to a variety of clients? The behaviour of other users on the server could impact the performance of your website.
• How many websites are packed on a single server?
• What type of DDoS response plan does the host have in case of a cyberattack to the network?
Cybersecurity is a serious concern for online retailers of all sizes. Contact your insurance broker for advice about cyber liability.
James is a Senior Account Manager at T H March (the BPA’s own insurance broker). He is Cert CII qualified with the Chartered Insurance Institute, has been with the company for 18 years and has many years of experience working with the UK jewellery trade and advising on security matters. www.thmarch.co.uk