In a world where cyber-attacks are becoming increasingly more sophisticated, it has never been more important to ensure that you are doing everything in your power to protect your customers’ information. Credit and debit card fraud amounted to over $11 billion in losses in 2012. In the beginning of 2014, one cyber attack exposed over 105 million identities. These figures clearly illustrate why you need to protect your point of sale against attackers. Here are three ways you can safeguard your point of sale from data security breaches.
- Ensure your network is secure
A secure network is vital for protecting against data security breaches. The good news is that there are several things that you can do to ensure that your network is secure against data security breaches.
- Restrict Communication: Communication flowing in and out of your environment should only consist of what is absolutely necessary.
- Ensure constant protection: you should always be protected with anti-malware and anti-virus software. Your most vulnerable areas, such as systems, applications, and even in-between patch cycles should have solid protective software monitoring them.
- Identify changing system components.
- Ensure that you are protected against malicious URLs and malware.
- Communication between applications and data should be encrypted.
- Continually scan your web applications for any potential weaknesses.
- Create secure passwords
Strong passwords can make all the difference in the world when protecting your customers’ identities and information from a data security breach. When your POS system is installed, installers often use default passwords. These passwords are highly vulnerable and easily obtained by hackers. It is essential that you change the passwords to your POS system immediately and on a regular basis.
Useful tips for creating strong passwords:
- Do not use the names of spouses, children, or pets.
- Don’t use dates that hold a specific significance to you, such as birthdates or anniversaries.
- Don’t use any words that can be found in the dictionary.
- Use a combination of letters and numbers, never just one or the other.
- Purchase an embedded POS system
Another good option for increasing POS security is an embedded POS system. If you are in a place to consider this, then you should. Although they aren’t completely eliminated, security breaches are drastically reduced when business owners implement embedded POS systems.
Embedded POS operating systems have built in features that make them more resistant to malware and viruses. They also have customizable security options which allow business owners to control which functions employees have access to. Additionally, embedded POS systems are built on solid-state technology. This ensures that they are not susceptible to viruses or spyware, allowing you peace of mind in the knowledge that your customer information is safe.
Security breaches are something that all business owners have to prepare for. However, when you take the necessary steps, your chances of a security breach can be drastically reduced. Following these three tips will help protect your business, and the threat of data security breaches will be greatly reduced.