Forget elections, who’s hacking your details from online retailers?

28 Mar 2017

Do you save your personal details when you make a purchase online? Retailers often entice customers to open an ‘account’ and save payment details on the promise of receiving discounts on future purchases and speeding up the buying process for next time. We all do it but is our precious data safe? According to NTT Groups 2016 Global Threat Intelligence Report, retailers now experience the most cyber-attacks of any industry, to put into context that’s three times as many as the previous top target, the financial Industry.

Massive headline grabbing breaches and warnings of weak cyber defences in the retail sector have been in the news for over ten years. As the threat and sophistication of online criminals and hackers increase, are national and global retailers doing enough to protect their customers?

Understandably, many retailers have heavily invested in their IT infrastructure, security tools and processes to ensure that data is secure and properly protected. Along with this Governments are beginning to educate and promote cyber security for enterprise and critical national infrastructure, through bodies such as US-CERT and the recently opened UK National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC).

The biggest misconception in the cyber security industry is believing that one product or one solution will protect you from everything. The truth is many products and services will have vulnerabilities discovered during their lifecycle; your approach should ensure that a single vulnerability is not catastrophic to your organisation's security.

Retailer’s seeking to protect their customers need to protect all data traveling around and stored inside their network. To do this effectively and for everyone accessing the network they must have clear, full visibility of all the traffic in their network. The most cost effective way to do this is to use an un-sampled Flow Monitoring System such as the powerful IP Flow Probe from Telesoft, so that you can see all the traffic moving through your network for real-time behavioural analysis, anomaly detection and rapid historical recall for incident response.

This forms the basis of an effective cyber security strategy, after all you are only as good as the data you can see. Which strikes at the very heart of the problem facing retailers, if you can’t see the threats and anomalies, then how can you protect your network and by extension your customers?