Save Holiday Sales From Cyber Attacks by Backing Up Your Online Store
With the rise in e-commerce sales, cybersecurity attacks are increasing. Last year, 70 percent of small business websites faced some type of cyberattack during the holiday season. This year, ransomware has already spiked 500 percent. These attacks can put stores offline for hours or days — and some out of business.
Obviously merchants can’t afford any downtime — especially during the busy holiday season — yet many assume their recovery will be quick. However, that’s not the case since not all of your data is protected. The world’s biggest cloud applications (BigCommerce, Google, Salesforce, Shopify, QuickBooks, etc.) go to great lengths to protect their platforms, however, retailers are on their own when it comes to individual account data. If your website is hijacked and data is lost, say goodbye to things such as product listings, orders, customer lists, blog posts, gift cards, themes and more.
Without an account-level backup strategy in place, retailers are forced to spend a significant amount of time and money restoring digital assets after a cyberattack. Let’s review three options.
Manually Back Up and Restore Your Store
Almost all platforms allow retailers to download a comma-separated values (CSV) file that recreates data in numbers and plain text. However, the format isn't consistent — sometimes it saves as a spreadsheet, sometimes it's a plain document.
For a proper CSV backup strategy, set a routine to download files for ALL the categories we covered earlier (products, customers, orders, etc.). Then organize and encrypt all files. In the event of a cyber disaster, import all the files back into your store. As CSV files don’t capture images, blog posts and other content sources, you'll also need to make copies of those. And do this after EVERY change to your e-commerce site.
Create Your Own Backup Solution
For more technically advanced retailers, your technology team can build your own backup software using SaaS infrastructure. This is not a project for your marketing or sales team. Make sure your technology resource has a strong grasp on application programming interfaces (APIs), which are like contracts with software companies but outlining how computer code can be used.
If you have the resources (i.e., developers on staff or money for contractors), building your own backup solutions can be an effective strategy. As cloud companies are ALWAYS making changes to their platforms, regularly test and update your solution.
Automated Third-Party Solution
There are also off-the-shelf solutions for many of the cloud platforms that automate all the backup/restore work outlined above. Automated backups can quickly restore an online store after any data incident.
Eliminating the need for time-intensive manual work or expensive custom-built solutions, automated third-party solutions vary widely in terms of cost, features, level of access, scalability, etc., so make sure you do your homework. Be on the lookout for solutions that do the work for you and are fully integrated with the cloud platform you're trying to back up. User testimonials and app store rankings are a good indicator of the best match for your business.
A backup strategy, which secures account-level data in critical cloud applications like Shopify or BigCommerce, is essential for retailers with an online presence. Stop risking revenue and start actively protecting stores from cyber attacks, phishing scams and data disasters that can wreak havoc. A data backup could not only save hours of frustration trying to restore a site after a data loss, but also save thousands of dollars in potentially lost profits.
Mike Potter is the co-founder and CEO of Rewind, the leading cloud data backup provider.
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Mike Potter is the co-founder and CEO of Rewind, the leading cloud data backup provider. Rewind is trusted by over 20,000 businesses to protect their data on platforms such as BigCommerce, Klaviyo, Mailchimp, Shopify and QuickBooks. A veteran entrepreneur, Mike has over 25 years of experience building solutions for the software, cloud and data analytics space, including tenures at Adobe and Mozilla. He earned his MBA from the University of Ottawa and his B.Eng in Mechanical Engineering from McMaster University. Mike currently resides in Ottawa, Canada.