Any shopkeeper has at least once pulled through an obnoxious, unlawful situation. They may have dealt with a person caught on stealing. Or an unscrupulous vendor who wanted to defraud them. Or even a business partner who wanted to set them up. An entrepreneur should pay much attention to security and illegal action prevention unless they want to get devastating profit or reputation losses. Unfortunately, online businesses are no exception. Along with all the advantages we are having in the era of eCommerce, we also have to face and deal with those cybercriminals targeting businesses and their clients.
(Picture Unsplash @snygo)
If you are an entrepreneur, especially one who works with other people or companies a lot, you will really understand the issue we are going to cover. Crime and outlaws – the significant problem for businesses and their customers. This article will give you a lot of info and statistics on cybercrime and data protection, as well as means of precaution to consider when doing an online business in Europe.
To begin with, let us determine what cybercrime is. This means an illegal activity that involves a digital device (like a computer) or/and a computer network. As it has been stated earlier, cybercrime mainly targets individuals or whole companies. They do so usually for making money by fraud, and more rarely to cause reputational damage to certain people or organizations. When sensitive info is stolen or financial accounts are hacked, the losses can be fatal. Cybercrime costs the global economy about $445 billion every year, with the damage to business from theft of intellectual property exceeding the $160 billion loss to individuals.
The number of cyber frauds has been skyrocketing for many years straight, and, unfortunately, is just predicted to increase in the future. Economic and socio-economic consequences of the pandemic that we are facing accelerate this already alarming trend. For you to see, “Arkose Labs”, a fraud prevention company, detected and stopped 1.1 billion online fraud attacks during the first half of 2020. According to different media and protection organizations’ stats, the number of fraud attacks during 2020 has almost doubled compared to 2019.
Here are some of the methods cybercriminals conduct their scams:
- Phishing – sending misleading messages via email or other channels, that make a user provide their personal information, access malicious websites, or download malicious payloads.
- Using Botnet – a network of computers that attackers infected with malware, compromised and connected them to a central command and control center.
- Using Ransomware – prevents employees from accessing IT systems until the company pays off a hacker.
- Browser hijacking – attacks like cross-site scripting (XSS) can cause malevolent code to run in a user’s browser.
Sometimes, owners of small entrepreneurship put few efforts into digital protection and cyberattacks’ prevention. They might think that their business is less likely to be targeted than enormous corporations. But it is not correct! Nearly 80% of companies reported having been hit by attackers in just 2017 – and the percent is definitely not lower now. Always remember that cyber criminals every so often goes after “lower-hanging fruit”.
Right below you can see a list of general recommendations on how to protect your business from cybercriminals – you really want to consider them and apply unless you wish your personal data or bank accounts to be stolen.
- Use a VPN – A reliable Virtual Private Network will make you almost invisible to hackers so your passwords or financial data cannot be stolen. There are numerous VPN options. Before choosing one, determine your organization’s needs and research which one is the best for you.
- Use an antivirus – usage of the corporate-approved anti-virus software to scan attachments will be the right choice for you.
- Let yourself be sceptical – emails from unknown senders, suspicious messages and links, grammatical errors in the text of the email – these all may be signs of fraud.
- Educate your staff – investing in cutting-edge security software but failing to educate your employees in cybercrime prevention will be of no use for hacks prevention.
In 2016 the European Union introduced the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPT) to provide data protection and privacy by law for the European Union (EU) and the European Economic Area (EEA). This also addresses the transfer of personal data outside the EU and EEA. The GDPR’s primary goal is to give individuals control over their personal data and to simplify the regulatory environment for international business by unifying the regulation within the EU. Therefore, entrepreneurs must process their clients’ sensitive information carefully and it needs to be in accordance with the GDPR. It is a huge responsibility, however, necessary to take into account how to manage it the right way. It can save a lot of resources having the GDPR in mind early on in the process of entering European markets.
It has been stated a lot throughout this series of articles – being an entrepreneur and working globally has its challenges. You most definitely realize some areas of concern. The eCommerce business does require a wide range of knowledge and skills from you – in this exact case, protecting your business or educating your employees to respond to cyberattacks and respects the regulations. As long as you want to grow business in Europe, you might want to consider the assistance of proficient individuals, who would help you in entering the European market and finding the optimal solution for your needs and wishes.
We from Viking Consulting can support you in entering the European market and find the optimal solution for your needs & wishes. This complies with our culture to build long-lasting beneficial relationships.
We welcome you to book your free meeting now to discuss further. Hit the “Let’s talk” button so we can start our journey together. As well, stay up-to-date and connect with us on LinkedIn. Glory and honor await us!
Viking Consulting team
Who we are
We are Viking Consulting. The specialists within the fields of 3rd party integration and eCommerce software solutions. With 20+ years of experience in eCommerce, 15+ years of experience in development and integration, and 5+ years as a 3PL provider. We are the only contact needed for implementing integration, development, and consulting.
The company is based in Scandinavia and the team extends to even embracing more countries. We serve companies worldwide. Our foundation is based on the values: Be Brave, Be Prepared, Be A Good Merchant, and Keep The Camp In Order. Therefore we see ourselves as business partners and friends of the clients, employees, companies, networks, and the industry.