Balancing Security with Performance for E-Commerce
E – Commerce companies and websites have always been one of the most prominent targets for security attacks/data breaches; not least due to the many private data that are usually stored in the database.
A security breach not only cause disruptions to your business operations, but also puts the company’s reputation and credibility at risk. On top of having to put more time and resources to clean up the mess caused by the attacks, it will also result in damaging loss in the revenue. To add salt to the wound, it is usually extremely hard to clean up completely after each attack; attackers might leave behind a backdoor that allows them future access to the website backend and create mayhem again.
One of the most common attacks is the distributed denial of service (DDoS). These are often conducted by a cluster of infected computers targeting a single component (i.e. the website). Even big companies like Meetup and Bitly have also fallen prey to such attacks, proving that no organisations should take cyber security for granted. Assaults like this can build a chain effect whereby other areas such as the site’s search engine rankings are affected as well. Lower ranking in search engines means lesser online exposure and presence, for an online business, this is equivalent to a physical store being isolated at an abandoned town with no human traffic. Lesser traffic will inevitably lead to lesser sales conversions on your e-commerce website; adding to the loss of existing consumers who have lost faith in you due to the previous security breach.
So how can e-commerce business owners ensure their websites are secure while not compromising on performance (speed)?
Security – Apart from what was mentioned in one of our previous blog posts “Why CMS Platforms are Common Hacking Targets”, you should also put in place the following measures/solutions:
- Web Application Firewall (WAF): WAF can protect your site against SQL attacks and cross-site scripting (XSS) among many other threats.
- Anti-DDoS: a typical DDoS mitigation generally consists of (1) detecting suspicious traffic, (2) Diverting suspicious traffic from its target, (3) Filtering of potential DDoS traffic through pattern identification, and (4) Analysing security logs to improve future resilience.
- Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) Certificates: SSL is a necessity for securing your website as it establishes an encrypted link between a web server and a browser; ensuring data remain private.
Speed – Given that more people are accessing the internet via mobile devices; good website performance is expected across all devices today. And Speed is what generally defines the performance of a website. The extremely short attention span of users puts even more weight on the importance of this attribute.
- Content Delivery Network (CDN): a CDN will be the recommended solution here. No matter where the users are, whichever device they are using, a reliable CDN can ensure your website content, including large video and image files, load quickly.
All e-commerce business should have their website security and speed in tip-top condition to provide online shoppers the best possible experience. The ideal scenario is to have a solution that marries both of these features together; and SwiftServe CDN is the perfect example. Even during sudden traffic spikes, the additional throughput from SwiftServe will prevent your website from crashing. This added stability, on top of the combination of security and speed ensures that your website can grow together with your business.