How the Payments Industry Changes Cybersecurity

The e-commerce industry has never been in a better place, with consumers spending more money online than ever before. However, outdated online payment services mean that this boom time is also an open season for cybercriminals. The average e-commerce business is an attractive prospect for fraudsters, with smaller businesses especially vulnerable. Thankfully, technological advancements in online payments are making it easier for enterprises to protect their assets and those of their customers.

Payment Cybersecurity in E-commerce

Any e-commerce business that wants to remain competitive needs to be thinking seriously about cybersecurity in online payments. In recent years, more consumers than ever have switched to the online sphere to make everyday purchases. Therefore every business is striving to offer the best payment solutions, for which you can read more here

Small to medium-sized businesses are now depending on an eCommerce site to remain viable. However, cybersecurity strategies often fall short when compared to their enterprise-level counterparts. 

While incidences of payment processing fraud have slightly decreased, fraudsters are becoming increasingly sophisticated. As such, an eCommerce site needs to have robust measures in place to protect its customers, profit margins, and credibility.

Biggest Threats

Every internet user has to deal with the inevitable threats that can exist in the online space. But when it comes to the eCommerce industry, those threads can cause serious damage. 

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Malware is a major issue when it comes to online payment services and e-commerce platforms. If systems are compromised by malware, sensitive data can be readily obtained by criminals. This can lead to an immediate impact on profits. However, in the long term, it can cause irreparable damage to credibility. 

Identity theft

Identity theft is a common trick in a fraudster’s arsenal. It makes up a significant proportion of all cyberattacks and is the leading form of e-commerce fraud. Even if an eCommerce site isn’t at fault, business owners can still end up paying for the consequences if a victim raises a chargeback that’s upheld. 

Chargeback fraud

Chargeback fraud is another real threat. It’s easy for customers to dispute card payments. If their bank or credit issuer sides with them, they’ll request a refund. Even if a customer makes a chargeback claim in error, businesses are forced to refund online payments at cost. 


Pharming is another concern for online businesses. Fraudsters redirect customers to fake websites that look indistinguishable from the real thing. While the fraudulent site looks identical, its only goal is to trick unsuspecting users into handing over personal information.

Payment Risk Reduction Methods 

There’s no surefire way of protecting against all cyberattacks. However, rigid security controls can help mitigate the issue and protect customers and platforms alike. At a minimum, e-commerce platforms need to be thinking about security plugins, privacy controls, authentication, and address verification systems. 

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Tokenization is a robust risk reduction system that replaces sensitive card information with a wholly unique encrypted code. This code is called a token. It’s typically implemented when customers are making online payments, preventing sensitive data from being exposed to third parties. Tokenization instills instant trust in customers. What’s more, it’s easy to implement, even for platforms using archaic online payment services. 

3D Secure 

3D Secure is another effective risk reduction method. With 3D Secure authentication, customers looking to make a purchase need to confirm that they’re the holder of the card they’re making a payment with. It’s all very simple. When a customer comes to make a payment, a one-time password (OTP) is sent to a verified phone number. This code is then used to authorize the payment and complete the transaction.

The Newest Trends and Innovations in Cybersecurity 

As more consumers embrace contactless payments in everyday life, expect more people to engage with payment systems they wouldn’t have considered before. As people leave behind bank transfers and switch to e-wallets and mobile payments, there are fewer weak links for cybercriminals to take advantage of. 

AI is also becoming more entwined with cybersecurity. Machine learning technologies are already in use by Visa and MasterCard, with predictive AI quickly alerting banks and financial institutions to any suspicious activity and likely cases of fraud. 

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Many e-commerce enterprises are waking up to the problem of credential stuffing attacks. These attacks use data sourced from previous breaches to attack new platforms. While a growing problem, there are some effective strategies to counteract it. One of these is credential screening, an ongoing process that assesses things like password integrity. 

Card skimming used to be an issue exclusive to ATMs and in-store transactions. However, e-skimming has emerged as a growing threat to online retail. Hackers use sophisticated codes to compromise e-commerce platforms, skimming valuable information during the payment processing stage. E-skimming codes can be introduced via phishing emails, cross-site scripting, or compromising a third party.


Consumers are spending a record amount of money online. However, businesses looking to capitalize on this growth need to recognize significant cybersecurity challenges. E-skimming, pharming, and chargeback fraud can all threaten the bottom line and compromise credibility. Thankfully, innovations in cybersecurity and payment processing like 3D Secure authentication and tokenization offer effective solutions that can safeguard businesses against fraudsters. They’re affordable and easy to implement, making them practical for enterprises of any size.