Payment Gateway Breaches and Data Security

secure payment gateways

If you run a business that sells products or services online, the payment gateway for your website is one of the last areas of the site you would want to be breached. Once a hacker stealthily moves past security measures and gets inside a gateway’s data repository, they often gain access to thousands or even millions of payment card numbers. For gateway hackers who are out to profit financially, gaining access to these numbers is a major score.

How Breaches Occur

To effectively prevent gateway breaches, you first need to understand how they occur. There are plenty of ways for online interlopers to penetrate payment gateway software. However, according to IT experts who conducted the Ponemon Institute 2016 Cost of Data Breach Study: Global Analysis, there are three root causes of data breaches around the world.

1. Human Error

Whenever humans perform work, there’s human error to contend with; payment gateway beaches are no exception. There are several types of errors that precipitate gateway breaches. Some of the most common ones are low password security, forgetting to turn on interior and/or exterior firewalls after IT maintenance, and keeping crucial information on a computer screen while stepping away from the computer.

Human error was responsible for 25% of data breaches in 2016.

2. Process Failure

human error responsible for data breachesAccording to ESET — a provider of internet security services — two primary types of process failures compromise data: When a company purchases a security solution such as antivirus software or encryption, but doesn’t keep it updated or enforce related security policies, [and] when a company purchases a security product but never implements it.

Process failure is responsible for 27% of data breaches in 2016.

3. Malicious Intent

The vast majority of malicious activity that causes data breaches (about 60%) is attributable to malware. Actual hacking accounts for about 22% of data breaches. Most would-be hackers gain entry simply by guessing passwords and answers to security questions, or by stealing the information.

For merchants, it’s important to remember that malicious activity can occur on both sides of the computer. Data breaches are typically thought to come from the exterior — and many of them do. But there are also a large number of breaches that originate internally, hence the need for double-sided firewalls wherever sensitive data is stored digitally.

Malicious attacks are responsible for 48% of data breaches in 2016.

Secure Payment Gatewayssecure payment gateways

The best way to secure payment gateways from the types of security breaches above, is having your gateway implemented and managed by a merchant service provider (MSP) with an excellent track record of maintaining secure payment gateways.

Typically, a merchant service provider is a third party payment processor that works with businesses to provide them with electronic ways to accept credit and debit card payments.

Allied Wallet is this type of MSP. Our customers receive safe and encrypted transactions and a suite of fraud prevention tools that allow users to enter sensitive information with confidence.

To inquire about steps we take to ensure our clients have secure payment gateways that are protected from data breaches, please call us today in the U.S. at (888) 255-1137, call us in the U.K. at +44 203 318 8334, or refer to the contact form on our website. We look forward to speaking with you!

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