Magento is a very popular eCommerce software that allows you to build and manage an online store. However, recently it has been targeted by hacker attacks, which has become a significant issue for Magento users. With that in mind, we want to shed some light on the most common security threats and how to avoid them. If you do decide to use Magento, it is crucial to understand how to protect your business and your client’s personal information.
How to install and use Magento
To understand the common security threats of Magento and protect your online business, let’s first learn how it works. This will help you know the software and its weak points.
First of all, it is an open-source platform. That is why it is so popular. You can use it to build and manage an eCommerce website easily. Additionally, you can customize it to your liking and use many of its unique features to tailor it to your clients’ needs. Magento is suitable for both small and large businesses.
The process of setting it up includes the following:
- Installing the software on your web server. From there, you will get access to the dashboard, where you can do all of the configuration options.
- Customize the storefront with the help of themes, widgets, and templates. The interface is built with the drag & drop feature, so it is pretty easy to configure.
- Manage products by adding descriptions, prices, and images. Additionally, you can add different product attributes to categorize them into similar groups.
- Manage orders, payments, shipping, and returns of products. The software also lets you create custom emails to inform your clients.
On top of all of this, Magento allows you to integrate more functionalities into your website, such as payment gateways, various marketing tools, shipping providers, and so on. As you can see, the software offers many possibilities. So, what is the issue?
Magento is Becoming a Target of Hacker Attacks
As with all apps that deal with finances, there is a danger of hacker attacks. Since Magento has a large user base and deals with online transactions, it has been a target of cyber attacks. Another reason for the platform being targeted is the third-party extensions which may be outdated, resulting in security breaches.
Common Security Threats and Ways to Avoid Them
If you are using Magento, it is crucial to understand the most common security threats and how to avoid them. Our list includes, but is not limited to:
- Malware or phishing attacks
- XSS attacks
- SQL injection
Besides these threats, there are also hacker attacks that can damage your SEO. Let’s learn more about cybersecurity and how to deal with these issues.
Malware or phishing attacks
Malware or phishing attacks are common types of cyber security threats that trick people into taking actions that will jeopardize the safety of their data. An example would be installing a piece of software on your machine. Some malware may even take control of a server, which is bad if you run Magento on it.
Or, you could receive an email asking you to sign on to your account and change a password because of a breach. An email is a fake form; if you use your login credentials, you are sending them to the hacker. Now they have access to your account.
The simplest way to protect your eCommerce website against these threats is never to open suspicious emails. If you received an email from someone you know, always contact them and verify they sent you an email. It never hurts to be more cautious.
XSS stands for cross-site scripting. That means someone is sending lines of code to your website as a piece of dynamic content, and that code changes how your website works. Or this could also happen if you click on an unverified link that will run a script and alter your website’s code.
These attacks can hijack websites or servers and cause severe harm to your business and your customers. It is a fact that Magento was under XSS attacks in the past.
Before we look at how to protect from this attack, let’s first look at another common threat that works similarly.
Just like with XSS attacks, SQL injection sends lines of SQL code to a dynamic field to cause irreparable damage to your database. SQL database holds all customer information, which is very sensitive. For example, if the code for the input field in a form is not well-written and protected against SQL injection, someone could input a line of code that could delete your entire database.
Both types of attacks include injecting harmful lines of code into a dynamic field, like a username or a password. This field directly communicates with the database by taking the input, running it on the backend, and returning a piece of information to the sender.
Implementing validation to all your dynamic forms is crucial to prevent XSS attacks and SQL injection. You must validate inputted data to ensure it is of the allowed format and that the data is encoded when sent to the server and back.
Generals Rules and Guidelines for Online Security
Besides specific actions that will prevent hacker attacks, there are some general safety guidelines everyone should follow. For example, always keep the software and all its plugins up to date. Patches are released to fix bugs and issues that could threaten your business and your customers. If you do not update your software, hackers can use that glitch in the system to hack it.
Furthermore, consistently enforce the use of strong passwords, as well as two-factor authentication. This common safety practice is now a standard of online business. Another good suggestion is to use a web application firewall to block malicious content and to regularly run scans and back up your website to minimize the impact of any security threat.
Alternatives to Magento
Luckily, many other apps will provide your website with the same benefits and functionalities. The most familiar ones are Shopify, WooCommerce, Salesforce Commerce for B2C, etc.
Some apps are also easier to set up and run and offer safe business automation. Magento can be complex on the server side, which also caused some performance issues in the past.
Learn how to protect your business and your customers!
Learning more about the most common security threats and how to avoid them is an excellent way to protect your business. As long as you stick to the essential safety guidelines of eCommerce business, you can protect your business and customers from cybersecurity threats.