How Businesses Can Protect Their Customers From Online Fraud This Christmas


It’s important that customers feel secure on a small business’s website, especially as according to Statistica, in 2022, global e-commerce stores lost an estimated 41 billion US dollars to online fraud, and this figure is expected to rise by the end of 2023.

With this in mind, the Bionic experts have outlined how SMEs can protect their online security to boost their customer loyalty and protect both their reputation and their profits. Please see some of the guide’s main points below:

Laura Court-Jones (Small Business Editor at Bionic) : “If you’re offering your products or services online — as a seller — it’s your responsibility to ensure the customer has a safe online shopping experience. Educating yourself on some simple best practices will make sure you don’t run into any issues like customer card details being stolen or delivery addresses falling into the wrong hands”

Secure website connection – “Make sure your site is Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS). This is when a website has a security certificate, and it’s the standard needed to have a secure internet connection. To get one, you need to buy a Secure Socket Layer (SLL) certificate and renew it every year to keep your website secure. Customers expect to see this on trusting websites

Strong authentication processes – “You want to make sure anyone who is using your website, creating an account, or downloading digital software is a legitimate buyer. Use a common three-step process which requires a password and possession (confirmation email or code sent to the registered email address) before access is granted.”

Secure payment gateways – “If you have a website where customers can make purchases — your payment method should be secure so hackers can’t access customer information, including card payment details, order history and other sensitive information. Third-party payment gateways allow you to take payments from your customers without having to store their card information. This protects the customer by reducing the risk that any information could be stolen in the unfortunate event that your database gets hacked.

How can you show customers that your site is legitimate? – “Modern consumers are savvy and they aren’t going to purchase from a website that doesn’t look legitimate.”

Use a branded website domain — You want a domain that is the same as or closely linked to your brand name. This helps create a sense of authority and trust in the buyer.

Maintain a social media presence — If a potential customer comes across your brand for the first time, they will look for signs to see if it’s legitimate – like checking social media accounts. If your accounts haven’t been updated recently, or worse, you don’t have any, this can make potential customers skeptical about your business

Encourage customer reviews — Potential customers might head to look at reviews to see what previous buyers say about your service. If you don’t have any – this can be a red flag for potential customers. Try to encourage your customers to write great reviews about your business by asking them in person or sending them emails with incentives (if you have marketing consent to do so).

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