Feature Story

New shopping solutions and why security is more important than ever

by Stephanie Chan

New shopping solutions and why security is crucial

Google's latest online retail options and Cisco's advice for shopping cybersecurity.

Through Google's new Shopping Actions program, you can now purchase items through the shopping ads that pop up in your search results. The retail solution works like this: When you search on Google for a product, you will see a listing from a retailer for that product and you can then add it to your Google Express cart. The pre-saved payment credentials help to make this an instant checkout. Shopping Actions works with Google Express and Google Assistant as well.

Retailers like Target, Home Depot, Ulta Beauty, Costco, and more are using this new program by giving Google a cut from each purchase profit.

See also: What Black Friday and retail will look like in the future

This is coming on the heels of the opening of the physical Amazon Go store. Similarly to Shopping Actions, shoppers would go into the store, pick up items, and leave—the items would automatically enter their online Amazon account.

These quick retail fixes might bring up a few security concerns for businesses and potential customers.

Cisco, one of the sponsors of this year's National Retail Federation conference, offers many digital retail solutions through new technology. But the company also understands the need for business and consumer cybersecurity in the retail space.

Criminals are often looking to sell information they can gather, like credit card and bank information, customer and employee data. According to Cisco Senior Vice President and Chief Security and Trust Office John Stewart, adversaries are evolving their approaches to exploit security gaps and to do more harm.  Many of these attackers are moving from physical stores to online retailers, due to easier accessibility. This blog post on Cisco News quotes Cisco Security Solution architect Christian Janoff on this phenomenon, "Cybercrime is like a balloon. Squeeze one end and it bulges where there is the least resistance."

There are a few things online retailers can do to get started on their way to better security. Online retailers should be aware of how criminals view their brand's security, possibly creating playbooks on how to handle potential crises. Training employees and performing a regular review of security policies will also help with more enforcement. By keeping up to date and tracking current fraud tactics, retailers can create better cybersecurity preparedness.

There's a lot more to learn about keeping retailers and customers safe. Learn more about staying secure with Cisco's 2018 Annual Cybersecurity Report.

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