The Importance Of Data Security In Retail
Running a retail business isn’t easy. There’s a lot that goes into it daily to ensure that it’s running smoothly and you always get a good return on investment. Amidst all the work, it’s easy to put the issue of data security in the background. You might have questioned yourself why you even need to bother about it.
Unfortunately, data security threats are real and you don’t have to become a victim before you act. Cybersecurity is paramount in a retail business at any level whether you operate a startup or chain of retail stores.
Today, there’s a greater emphasis on cybersecurity as the popularity of online shopping increases and retailers understand the importance of collecting and using customer data. As a business, you can’t just collect data; you also are responsible for protecting it. If hackers steal your customers’ information from you, you may face legal consequences.
The keyword there is ‘may.’ Indeed, some companies for the past years didn’t face any charges when their customers’ information was stolen from them. However, in return, their reputation plummeted, and the event negatively affected their businesses.
Now, you ask yourself, what is data security? In simple terms, data security is the process of protecting data from unauthorized access. There are various measures to secure data that you can perform.
If that’s not enough reason for you to be convinced, here are some benefits of data security in a retail business.
Minimizes Risk Of Data Breach
Data breaches are becoming common occurrences on the web, and numerous negative business implications can happen to you if you become a victim.
For one, they can cost your business through potential settlements and fines for non-compliance with data protection laws. You also need to spend on fixing any damage the attacker may have inflicted in your system and database. Not to mention that you also need to improve your data security and perform data recovery if needed.
Those are just a few of the reasons you must minimize the risk of a data breach by putting proper data security measures in place.
Builds Consumer Trust
Unlike before, people are more aware of what data breaches are and how they can affect them. They dread the thought of hackers having their email addresses, phone numbers, or payment card details accessed or leaked to the public.
You should know by now that data security is a concern for everyone. Customers—and even you—may be already following best practices when it comes to sharing data and information online to protect themselves.
Because potential clients and current customers are more apprehensive when it comes to data security, your business should assure them that their data is safe with you. To continue doing business with you, you must provide them a secure environment and promise that you will use their data appropriately.
Gives You Competitive Advantage
Aside from minimizing data breaches and building customer trust, data security can be your company’s selling or strong point. A PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) report indicates that 87% of customers would prefer to do business elsewhere if they felt that their data wasn’t being handled responsibly by a company. That makes data security an excellent marketing tool that you can use over your competitors.
A proactive approach to data security keeps your files and information safe from breaches and cements customer relationships.
Ways To Improve Data Security In Retail
Knowing those three key points on you how important data security in your retail business, the next step is to initiate and implement policies, guidelines, and practices to secure your data. Below are some of the ways you can use to enhance your data security practices.
Invest In Good Internet Security
- Secure your network and ensure that everyone within the organization can access your server or system from a secure connection at all times.
- Stronger Password Policy: Passwords are the weak link that cybercriminals, both internal and external, exploit to gain access. But using a password manager can help ensure that there are password standards that everyone in the company must meet.
- Encrypt Data Whenever Possible: Data encryption is a standard method to prevent hackers and other malicious individuals from viewing and accessing all information that goes in and out of your website or server.
Data and information stored by retail businesses are always at high risk of cyberattacks. And as a retailer, you must take data security seriously. Doing so goes a long way as it can improve sales, build customer trust, and prevent any costly damage data breaches can bring to your business.