Keeping your business safe is a prime concern of any entrepreneur or business owner. Especially nowadays when cybercrime and cybersecurity breaches are a daily occurrence.
For B2B businesses, 2024 will be a crucial year: digital immune systems are slowly becoming a significant trend to keep an eye on, if you want your business to be safe and sound this upcoming year.
But is this not something we should already be used to? Have we not struggled against malware, viruses, and hacking for more than 50 years already? Well, yes and no. Today, we want to take you into the bowels of the beast and take a tour through the key elements that have resurfaced old concerns regarding cyber security.
Are you ready to create the perfect digital immune system for your B2B brand? Let’s go!
What is a digital immune system?
The idea of developing a digital immune system for your B2B e-commerce platform has been experimented with a lot during this past year.
And the concept itself – although not under that particular name – has been around for as long as computing hackers have existed. The idea is simple: every website, software or platform is indeed a sum of multiple parts. Some of their hardware, other software, and nowadays, some of that software is not even locally contained but is more free-flowing and stored online as cloud-based software/services.
This means that all these parts – especially the latter, the cloud services – are moving parts. Components of a greater whole – the website, platform, or e-commerce – must be controlled and handled from a security perspective as an organic system, and not as isolated parts.
Henceforth, the use of the terminology ‘digitally immune system’, which is a reminiscence of our own immune systems, to further implies that – as it also happens with a living being – a modern e-commerce platform is composed of many interconnected parts, constantly evolving and changing.
This issue, the way e-commerce platform architecture is currently being developed – based on ever-evolving interconnected parts – has grown into a particularly complex phenomenon. That’s why global B2B e-commerce has been pushing around the idea of creating digital immune systems.
The idea is simple: combine practices and technologies for software design, development, operations, and analytics to mitigate business risks – especially the risks associated with system failures.
How bad could it be?
That’s one of the constant questions that many CEOs, business owners, and decision-makers keep thinking about when facing the challenge of improving their cybersecurity.
Because, let's be honest, developing a digital immune system is indeed a challenge. It is no easy feat.
So, how bad could it be? How bad are potential security issues in reality – in money? At the end of the day, you don’t normally watch TV news saying, ‘This company went bankrupt due to a security breach’ or nothing similar. It can’t be that dangerous?
Well, let me puff you out of your bubble… security issues are a massive problem. It is bad. Really bad.
According to an IBM survey, data breaches and security issues are becoming massive global problems. The average cost of a data breach globally in 2023 was USD 4.45 million, a 15% increase over a three-year period. Also, the average savings for organizations that use security AI and automation extensively is USD 1.76 million compared to organizations that don’t, according to IBM.
Ok… I want a digitally immune system… where do I start?
The quick and easy answer is to check out the Intershop Digital Trends Report for 2024. Inside, you will find an entire section dedicated to helping you set up your own digital immune system from scratch.
But, in the spirit of helping, we want to surmise some of the key elements showcased in the 2024 B2B trends report by Intershop and give you these easy steps to begin your journey into cybersecurity.
1. Don’t reinvent the wheel.
Going for well-known, safe, and proven e-commerce platforms is the best way to start building a safe and successful digital immune system.
Large e-commerce platforms and well-known e-commerce solutions had to – by natural selection – fortify themselves in light of constant attacks. The e-commerce platforms with thousands of stores and have been alive for years, just by mere statistics, must have faced millions of cyberattacks.
Their native functionalities and solutions have been, therefore, reinforced by trial and error. They know the current meta of the cybercriminal world and have their software constantly updated to meet the challenge posed by hackers and other unscrupulous people.
2. Understand your platform as a system.
The whole concept of a digital immune system depends on the fact of understanding that your e-commerce cybersecurity is dependent on the fact that all its parts are secure.
That being said, don’t cut corners. Provide enough budget and human resources to safeguard all the different components of your e-commerce system. One week link, can shatter the entire chain.
3. Keep it updated!
This is vital. No matter when you read this: always keep your software updated. The world is in constant evolution. And ‘evildoers’ are one of the strongest forces of evolution. Therefore, you must keep pace with the hackers and other cybercriminals and present a solid shield to each new weapon they release.
Professional B2B e-commerce platform providers know this, so they release constant updates to keep your core systems shielded from potential attacks. That’s another reason why you should select well-known brands when choosing your e-commerce solution.
Overall, 2024 is a year that will consolidate and advance B2B e-commerce globally. And as we get closer and closer to a point in which B2B e-commerce will handle more market transactions and a bigger market share than offline B2B – and this will happen, rest assured – we will need to strengthen our platforms and increase our cybersecurity. After all, it is like having a business without a door… we don’t want that, don’t we?