Digital threats: Protect your jewellery business from cybercrime

April 30, 2021

By Larry Spicer

Amidst pandemic-related lockdown measures, more and more business owners turned to e-commerce as a way to stay connected with their customer base and make sales. Photo ©BigStockPhoto.com[1]Amidst pandemic-related lockdown measures, more and more business owners turned to e-commerce as a way to stay connected with their customer base and make sales. For many, these digital platforms are invaluable, as they provide convenience for the consumer, as well as efficient and seamless payment processes.

However, as e-commerce technology continues to evolve and become more sophisticated, criminals, in turn, are developing new tactics to target the assets of businesses without ever stepping foot inside a store. As such, it is beneficial for you, as a small business owner, to be aware of the threats associated with cybercrime and how you can protect yourself in an ever-evolving digital age.

What is cybercrime?

Cybercrime refers to computer-oriented criminal activity. It takes many forms and may include:

As with many security measures, the most efficient way to protect your business and your customers is to remain aware of your potential vulnerabilities, as well as implement steps to strengthen your security.

For starters, it is worth noting that, even if you do not sell inventory online, any computer connected to the internet can become a target (or, a source of attempted crime). This is even more relevant if you have a broadband connection and are using either a cable or DSL that is always on.

Consider the following measures to enhance your digital security:

Security tips for digital payments

Often referred to as a ‘necessary evil’ for small operations, payment card processing can, indeed, be overwhelming and expensive for business owners.

When making sales by way of payment card transactions, there are a few considerations to keep in mind. The first is the type of payment card being used—as in chipped (e.g. Visa, Mastercard, etc.) or non-chipped (i.e. magnetic stripe). Chipped cards are much harder for criminals to duplicate, making the non-chipped variety more of a target. This means, of course, there is a higher risk when conducting sales with these cards.

It is a good idea to create a committed practice around payment card acceptance—one that is written into your store policy. When drafting such a document, consider these best practices:

Boosting safety

For added security, you can also protect your business with a cyber liability insurance policy. This covers the loss of money incurred due to financial fraud, as well as liability claims where there is a duty to defend lawsuits or regulatory penalties are incurred.

[2]Larry Spicer is vice-president of loss prevention and risk management at Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group in the United States. He has more than 20 years’ experience as a security professional. Comments and questions can be sent to lossprevention@jminsure.com[3].

For resources regarding safety and security when carrying or working with jewellery, visit JewelersMutual.com[4]. For more information on reliable burglar alarm systems, subscribe to the Jewelers Mutual Clarity blog at jewelersmutual.com/clarity-blog. Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group is the only company specializing exclusively in jewellery insurance in Canada and the United States. It is licensed in Canada and all 50 states.

Endnotes:
  1. [Image]: https://www.jewellerybusiness.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/bigstock-cybercrime-hackin.jpg
  2. [Image]: https://www.jewellerybusiness.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/Headshot_Larry-Spicer.jpg
  3. lossprevention@jminsure.com: mailto:lossprevention@jminsure.com
  4. JewelersMutual.com: http://JewelersMutual.com

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