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Payscout Blog

This Holiday, Don't Let "The Grinch" Steal Your Data.

Posted by Lyn McKay on Nov 28, 2016 11:28:41 AM

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The Holiday Season represents a tremendous opportunity for merchants looking to capitalize on ecommerce sales. With the increasing threat of cyber attacks and data security breaches, it also presents a unique set of challenges for business owners looking to capitalize on the seasonal uptick in online shopping.

The 2016 holiday shopping season is going to keep a lot of data security professionals busy.

ThreatMetrix, a digital identity company, recently released a 2016 cybercrime report in which they predicted a sharp increase in cyber attacks targeting key retailers during the 2016 holiday season; with a potential 50 million cybercrime attacks during the peak shopping week.

In addition to the substantial volume of predicted attacks, the complexity of these cybercrimes continues to evolve.

"Attacks have evolved from being one-dimensional with a singular purpose to being a Frankenstein's monster of attack vectors, using bots, social engineering and remote access stealth in various combinations," says Vanita Pandey, vice president of strategy and product marketing at ThreatMetrix. "Fraud prevention is no longer simply about timely detection but about getting under the skin of evolving attack patterns to better thwart the rise of cybercrime."

The increasing complexity of these attacks - and the preventative measures that ward against them - come at a time when most retailers and etailers are overestimating the efficacy of their endpoint security.

In a recent Tripwire study conducted by Dimensional Research, retail IT professionals were found to be overconfident in their ability to efficiently identify and mitigate a cyber attack. Seventy-one percent believed they could detect configuration changes to endpoint devices on their organizations’ networks within hours, but only fifty-one percent knew exactly how long the process takes.

The combination of increasingly complex cyber crime attacks, and overconfidence in endpoint security, means the solution providers who can deliver on the promise of increased fraud protection will help their clients move confidently through another busy holiday season for ecommerce shopping

Consumers ready to buy, but also worry.

Reports from another recent payments study suggests online shopping will continue to surge this holiday season, but this promise also comes with increasing consumer concerns about the security of cardholder data.

76 percent of 1,900 consumer respondents in the United States and UK, plan to shop online this holiday season. Many are planning to spend as much or more than they’ve spent online in the past: 55 percent of respondents said they’ll spend the same amount and 19 percent are planning to spend more.

Despite this optimistic outlook, consumers are increasingly reticent about security.

When asked if they’re concerned about security when disclosing their credit card and bank information online, 74 percent of these same respondents agreed - and 45 percent strongly agreed.

Consumer concerns are amplified when considering shopping at retailers that have recently experienced a data breach. More than half of respondents, 57 percent in total, said they would not shop with retailers who had experienced a breach. Almost a third, 31 percent, said they strongly agree that they would avoid that retailer.

So, what does all of this mean for online entrepreneurs? It means this holiday season is shaping up as a tremendous opportunity - but one data breach could not only compromise the security of a customer-base, it could undermine the merchant’s ability to maximize the pending holiday shopping surge

Payscout is here to help.

Fortunately, for both payment solution providers and the merchants they serve, Payscout can help.

With a leading global team of managed risk analysts and fraud-management experts, Payscout is poised to protect retail and ecommerce businesses with automated fraud screening and manual review to ensure the business - and its customers - remain secure.

Click here to learn more about Payscout’s fraud management tools.

Moreover, just in time for the holiday season, Payscout recently announced a partnership with Protocol, a recognized thought leader in data security standards for Payment Card Industry (PCI) Compliance. Payscout and Protocol will work together to build a strong data security foundation built on best practices, but also customized on how each merchant client handles and processes cardholder data.

There is a lot on the line for business owners this holiday season - and all year long. Entrepreneurs should focus on doing what they do best: providing the goods and services that help earn their customers’ loyalty.

When it comes to data and security, leave it to a global payment processing partner with Integrity/Trust and Reliability built into the very foundation of its business.

This holiday, Payscout is here for online entrepreneurs and their payment services providers, to make the most of a promising shopping season.

Topics: Global eCommerce, Credit and Debit Card Processing