Last editedDec 20222 min read
As a business owner, one of your chief concerns should be guaranteeing secure payments from customers. This is not just for the customer’s sake, but for your business’ too. Having an unprotected and unsecured payment system can lead to more cases of credit card fraud, which can lose you sales revenue and cost you your reputation.
In this article, we’ll explain why having a secure payment system should be a priority.
Why is it important to have a secure payment system?
When customers come to your store, either online or in person, they expect a minimum standard of service. This standard involves being able to make payments securely. The payment system you have in place you should therefore meet that minimum standard.
In addition, having poor security measures will result in you losing both customers and revenue long-term as customers and bank representatives will come to you to recoup lost funds from fraudulent activity.
This can result in you losing both the profit from the sale, and the product or service itself. Needless to say, this can cause you serious financial issues.
It can also result in harm to your company’s reputation, as affected customers will view your business in association with their negative fraud experience.
A secure payment system will facilitate the transfer of payment information and customer data, and provide protection against fraud and other potential safety issues.
How to enhance payment security
As a business owner, there are a number of measures you can take to improve your payment security. Focusing on security will help keep the risk of data theft and fraud low.
Limit data storage
With every transaction that goes through your site, you gain an opportunity to gather data on customers. This can be very useful when it comes to understanding your customers and being able to better tailor your products and services to them. However, it’s vital that any and all gathered customer data is securely stored.
It’s also recommended that you limit data storage and only gather the minimum required for customer analysis. This is in order to limit the damage that can be done in the case of a cyber attack.
Implement 3D Secure Authentication
3D Secure Authentication adds an additional authentication step at payment, redirecting cardholders to a different page to confirm their identity.
Use HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure)
HTTPS encrypts data in order to protect customer information. This prevents cyber attackers and fraudsters from being able to view sensitive customer information. You can utilise HTTPS by purchasing an SSL certificate.
Ensure your SSL certificate is up to date and working
An SSL certificate is a digital certificate that authenticates a site and provides an encrypted connection. This can help prevent fraud and security breaches.
Check your commerce store is PCI-DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) compliant
All ecommerce sites that accept credit card payments must be PCI compliant. This means that your site meets the standards outlined by the Payment Card Industry and offers a safe way to take customer payments.
Take payments by direct debit or PayTo
Direct Debit is a 'pull' payment that allows businesses to collect payments directly from customer accounts. This is a very safe payment method, eliminating the risk of fraud as the business is in full control of the payment.
Direct Debit offers a lot of additional benefits to merchants, such as improving cash flow due to the reduction of failed payments, late payments and chargebacks.
GoCardless’ tool PayTo is an updated version of Direct Debit, allowing merchants to initiate real-time payments from customer bank accounts. It is set to transform the way we take payments and, like all Direct Debit set-ups, allows no room for fraud. With instant customer verification, PayTo is the fastest and safest way to conduct account-to-account payments.
The bottom line
The payment system you set up in your online and physical store plays a significant role. Making sure that it meets security regulations and offers customers a decent level of fraud protection is important for customers and your business.
We can help
GoCardless is a global payments solution that helps you automate payment collection, cutting down on the amount of financial admin your team needs to deal with. Find out how GoCardless can help you with one-off or recurring payments.