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8 Effective Strategies To Protect Your Online Customers from Cyber Threats

  • Posted by Kanika Sinha
  • January 23, 2024
Cyber threats

The rapid digitalization of business operations, accelerated by COVID-19, has led consumer goods companies to amass increasing amounts of consumer data. Failure to safeguard this data can significantly harm customer trust and brand reputation. Additionally, severe penalties can be incurred for non-compliance with cybersecurity regulations.

A successful cyberattack can bring a consumer goods company to a standstill. Ransomware, in particular, can disrupt production and supply chains by targeting information and operational technology infrastructures. This underscores the need for consumer goods companies to prioritize investments in robust cybersecurity networks.

This article enumerates eight effective strategies for consumer goods firms to protect customer information.

1. Know the data better

Remember that you can only protect consumer data if you know what it is and where it is stored. So, ensure that you thoroughly understand what kind of data you collect from customers, how it is utilized, and who uses it. You should also know how sensitive the data is, where it is stored, and when it is shared. 

To gather this information, undertake the following steps:

  • Perform a comprehensive data audit to pinpoint data and information throughout the enterprise.
  • Categorize each data type based on sensitivity, use case, and accessibility requirements. 
  • Compile a data inventory to understand what data requires protection. 
  • Determine the relevant compliance laws applicable to your organization.

2. Leverage the power of encryption

Encrypt all your data in transit and at rest by deploying the latest encryption techniques. For instance, you can use AES-256 encryption to secure email data and file-level encryption to safeguard data on systems and servers.

3. Employ multi-factor authentication (MFA)

Use MFA tools to ensure that cybercriminals cannot access your company’s accounts and data even if they manage to steal an employee’s password. These systems require users to prove their identity before accessing the device, network, and system.

4. Gather only necessary data

Remember, you can minimize the potential impact of a data breach by collecting only a limited amount of customer’s personal information and data. Ensure you gather only the private or sensitive data necessary for your business to achieve specific goals, such as enhancing customer experiences.

5. Educate your employees regarding data privacy

You can significantly reduce the risk of cyber attacks by keeping your employees informed and updated about the importance of data privacy and the specific measures needed to protect it. In this regard, consider to:

  • Educate your staff on cybersecurity best practices. 
  • Conduct periodic training on the latest data privacy regulations.
  • Communicate the risks of using public Wi-Fi for sensitive tasks.

6. Limit access to data

Limiting access to customer data and other information on a need-to-know basis can help you minimize internal threats to the data. Consider adopting the principle of least privilege (PoLP) so your employees can only access the data they need for their role. Besides, you can use identity and access management tools to control access levels and permissions.

7. Set up a comprehensive data protection infrastructure

Establish a robust security infrastructure incorporating the following tools:

  • Antivirus and anti-malware solutions
  • Latest authentication tools
  • Anti-adware and anti-spyware software
  • Next-generation web firewall
  • Pop-up blockers
  • Endpoint detection and response tools
  • Vulnerability scanner

8. Conduct periodic security audits

Hold regular security audits to safeguard customer information. This involves identifying potential vulnerabilities and ensuring systems are appropriately configured and protected.

The final word

Safeguarding your online customers from cyber threats is not just a responsibility; it’s a crucial commitment to building trust and ensuring the longevity of your consumer goods business. Following the strategies outlined in this guide can empower your organization to create a robust defense against cyber threats and data breaches.

Want to know more about data security in startups and small businesses? Full Stack Finance has been the one-stop solution for startups and high-growth businesses. Our essential business solutions include accounting, finance, taxes, CFOs, and HR services. Talk to an expert today.


Kanika Sinha
Kanika Sinha

Kanika is an enthusiastic content writer who craves to push the boundaries and explore uncharted territories. With her exceptional writing skills and in-depth knowledge of business-to-business dynamics, she creates compelling narratives that help businesses achieve tangible ROI. When not hunched over the keyboard, you can find her sweating it out in the gym, or indulging in a marathon of adorable movies with her young son.

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