Cybersecurity for Online Payments: A Closer Look at Paying With Cryptocurrency
Updated October 6, 2023
Credit and debit cards are still the most famous and preferred payment method. However, with blockchain technology evolving and Web3 on its way, consumers are looking for alternative payment options.
That’s when cryptocurrencies come into the picture. It’s true they’re highly secure and enable faster transactions, but they’re also a target of many cyber threats aimed at stealing digital assets.
Despite this, cryptocurrencies have gained increased adoption in recent years, with many merchants already accepting them as a form of payment. In fact, approximately 70 million people use blockchain wallets worldwide.
The world is obviously moving towards a cashless society, and cryptocurrency is likely to play a huge role in this trend. If you’re interested in growing your business digitally – kind of a must nowadays, let’s take a look at the benefits and risks associated with cryptocurrency payments.
Why Bitcoin is more than just a trend for online payments
We’re constantly witnessing new cryptocurrencies coming onto the stage competing to maintain a price. However, Bitcoin, with its wide use cases, is still on top. Many might associate Bitcoin with investment and it might come as a surprise that its first-ever use was to replace traditional payment methods.
Nowadays, you can buy Bitcoin on Moonpay and experience its benefits but can also accept it as a payment method and help your e-commerce business stand out against competition. Due to its decentralised nature, not only is Bitcoin more secure than traditional payment methods but is also more cost-effective.
Benefits of adopting cryptocurrency payments
You don’t have to be a tech expert to understand cryptocurrency and implement them in your business. So many user-friendly platforms and tools have emerged, that accepting crypto as a payment method has never been easier.
That said, let’s get you familiar with some of the benefits cryptocurrency payments can offer your business.
Financial flexibility and instant settlement
We’re all aware of how annoying traditional payments can be sometimes. Bank transfers are often susceptible to technical issues and payment delays, which is why they might even take up to a week.
Cryptocurrencies, on the other hand, are fine with validating transactions on their own, without a third party involved in the process. No matter the industry you’re operating in, this means you’ll have more control over your finances.
Lower transaction fees
If you accept credit and debit card payments then you’re used to paying a fee of around 2.9% or higher for every transaction. This means that you still haven’t taken advantage of the power of cryptocurrency.
While traditional payment methods are associated with higher transaction fees, cryptocurrencies are associated with almost non-existent fees. This is because they don’t require intermediaries in the process, instead, they’re validating the transaction on a decentralised ledger.
By accepting cryptocurrency payments, you’re giving your business an advantage in a competitive digital market but are also saving your business money in the long run.
Say no to fraudulent chargebacks
Even if you’re the best at what you do, you’ve certainly dealt with customers asking for a chargeback. This is a time-consuming and inevitable process when it comes to e-commerce businesses.
No matter their nature, chargebacks can be costly for your business, especially if they’re fraudulent. However, with cryptocurrency payments, you can rest assured the risk of fraudulent chargebacks is reduced, as once you complete a transaction on a blockchain, there’s no going back.
Better marketing opportunities
With everything that’s happening, it’s safe to say that the world is technologically driven. In 2021, Norway’s central bank even announced that it’s exploring cryptocurrency as an alternative payment to aid towards a cashless society.
This is a huge indicator that businesses that don’t adapt to new technological changes are more likely to be left behind. However, if you do take a step and accept cryptocurrency payments you can attract a new segment of customers, as well as offer new and existing customers a more convenient and secure payment method.
Maintain customers’ loyalty and trust
The standards for a successful e-commerce business have drastically changed, along with customers’ expectations. By adopting cryptocurrency, you’re giving your customers an alternative payment method that’s known for its secure nature.
This means they don’t have to provide any sensitive information on the internet and even if they do this information is protected with you. Consequently, that’ll lead them to put their trust and loyalty into your business.
Cybersecurity threats associated with crypto payments
Cybersecurity threats have always been an issue, especially now when businesses are operating in a digital landscape. Cryptocurrencies thrive on their highly secure nature but there are still some risks associated with implementing them as payment methods.
- Silent but deadly malware. If malicious software aka. malware targets your device, it can gather sensitive information about your cryptocurrency history without you knowing. Malware is often used to attack mining machines, as well as steal cryptocurrency from online wallets.
In 2017, the infamous WannaCry ransomware took place. It attacked thousands of computers in more than 150 countries, even systems in the National Health Services in England, demanding payment in Bitcoin.
- Compromised registration forms. Some crypto exchanges will require you to fill out a form with your personal information. While the chances are low, it’s still possible for hackers to compromise their registration forms and steal yours or your customers’ sensitive information.
This is a true example of how identity theft can happen. Once hackers get ahold of this information they can sell it on the black market and use it for their own gain.
- Phishing scams. If you open your email spam folder now, you’ll probably see a lot of fraudulent messages regarding cryptocurrency. They’ll say whatever – you own cryptocurrency that’s waiting to be paid out, they need your private keys to secure your funds, etc.
Well, the only thing they’re trying to do is trick you into providing your personal information or send them money. If they succeed and get ahold of your private key you can say goodbye to your cryptocurrency.
Best practices for securing your cryptocurrency transaction
Cryptocurrencies have shown us they’re perfectly capable of revolutionising the financial world. However, there’s still a lot of room for improvement – stronger regulations, enhanced smart contracts, and an even more secure blockchain.
So, while we’re waiting for significant changes, why not take matters into our own hands? That said, let’s take a look at the best practices to secure your cryptocurrency transactions.
Find a reputable exchange
Considering there are many cryptocurrency exchanges to choose from, you should carefully do your research before proceeding with one. At the end of the day, it’s your funds we’re talking about, so you should find a reputable exchange and one that you can trust.
You should check if the exchange has a valid licence to provide such services, as well as if it has a strong online presence concerning positive feedback from others. Additionally, make sure to check the exchange’s fees and transaction processing time.
Try data discovery
Data discovery refers to the process of collecting and evaluating data to better understand trends and patterns. So, what is data discovery in terms of cryptocurrency you wonder? By using data discovery, you can explore your cryptocurrency data sources and identify possible fraudulent activity.
Not only that, but you can also learn more about the regulations surrounding cryptocurrency to ensure you’re operating within legal and regulatory frameworks.
Use a strong password
Not only in the world of cryptocurrency but using a strong password is recommended for any online accounts you might have. This password should be a mix of upper and lower cases, numbers and symbols.
By doing so, you’re making sure your cryptocurrency is more protected, as cracking a strong password is difficult for hackers.
Use two-factor authentication
Two-factor authentication (2FA) will give that additional protection. It’s easy and convenient to implement and use, so why not go to sleep without worries weighing on your mind? So, basically, you will provide a second form of identification in addition to your password. This can be a text message, a code, or a face recognition.
Many people tend to avoid back up but it’s actually very useful when it comes to securing data. By regularly backing up your cryptocurrency data you can protect data loss, as crypto wallets can be subject to fraud and technical issues.
To successfully do this, you can find a backup solution that’s compatible with your wallet, as well as store the cryptocurrency data on a few locations, such as a hard drive, USB, and cloud.
Securing your cryptocurrency online payments
We’ve all heard that blockchain is almost impenetrable but that almost is worth considering. Cryptocurrency and blockchain have become mainstream but they’re still not widely adopted as traditional payment methods.
That said, while cryptocurrency’s advantages outweigh the disadvantages, it’s important to note that blockchain isn’t immune to cyber attacks. With that in mind, you should know that your and the security of your customers lies in your hands.
Author Bio: Makedonka Micajkova is a freelance content writer and translator, always bringing creativity and originality to the table. Being multilingual with professional proficiency in English, German and Spanish, it’s needless to say that languages are her biggest passion in life. She is also a skilled communicator, as a result of having three years of experience as a sales representative. You can find her on Linkedin.