Online Shopping - Employer and Security Issues
Released on: December 08, 2010, 4:30 am
Internet & Online
As Christmas is nearly upon us again, the last minute rush to
buy the remaining presents is intensifying. But according the APACS,
the UK payments association (apacs.org.uk), 85% shoppers find the high
street too crowded and stressful. Therefore many of us are increasingly
using the internet to buy our presents; it is easy, quick and you do
not have to endure the cold weather or long queues.
Also, the presents are delivered to your door within one or two days and some are
even gift wrapped in the process.
We are spending online at an average rate of £4.57 million per hour in the run-up to
Christmas – (IRMG - Interactive Media in Retail Group - img.org ). “38% of those
sales have taken place outside of traditional shopping hours, either before 9am or
after 6pm.” That surely means that 62% of those sales are placed during working
hours. This is causing information security experts like commissum to fear that many
shoppers will be using their company’s time and resources to do
their shopping in working hours. This can open organisations up to a number of risks
such as loss of productivity, reduction of available bandwidth and increase of
personal email which can lead to more spam and phishing attacks. Companies are
therefore advised to provide employee with awareness training such as provided by
But if the internet is such a convenient way to buy your last minute presents why
aren’t we all using the online shops? After all, the online market is currently £
1.6 billion of a potential £ 5 to £ 6 billion to be spent leading up to Christmas.
Apparently one in three of us are avoiding the online shops because of the perceived
dangers of fraud, commissum are therefore helping online shops to keep their systems
secure with their PCI DSS related services.
At commissum we often see evidence of users not taking
simple measures to reduce these risks. Neither are they aware of the risks of their
actions while purchasing goods online. This is backed-up by statistics from Card
watch (cardwatch.org.uk) concluding that 1 in 8 online shoppers fail to logout a
shopping site and 1 in 4 online shoppers do not check whether a website is safe and
We think that online retailers could do more to promote safe online shopping giving
simple advice while guiding online shoppers through the payment process.
They could remind online shoppers to make sure their computer is protected with
up-to-date virus protection and that the firewall is activated; that their computer
browser is set to the highest level of security notification and monitoring. Ask
online shoppers to check whether they can see the “https:” at the beginning of the
website address or to ensure that the security icon – the locked padlock or
unbroken key symbol – is showing in the bottom of their browser window. And tell
online shoppers to log-out of the website when they are finished and to store their
credit card safely.
Providing general awareness on safe online shopping will create understanding of the
dangers involved and will increase consumer knowledge and confidence to shop more
online. It will enable us to avoid spending hours in overcrowded high streets and in
doing so reduce our stress levels.
Visit the websites cardwatch.org.uk, banksafeonline.org.uk and getsafeonline.org,
for more information about how to shop and bank safely online.
With 20 years of experience, commissum is adept at
offering practical advice and recommending cost-effective solutions, to deliver a
joined-up, coherent approach to protecting an organisation's information assets.
Contact Details: Commissum,
142 Commercial Street,
t: 0845 644 3217
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