Secure Oscommerce Hosting

Written by Stephanie Ayars
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The importance of having secure hosting can not be overstated. Fraud, privacy issues, and consumer security are but three areas that dictate having secured servers. It's a sad fact that there are those that take advantage of weak security systems. It's critical that every online business do everything they can to protect themselves, and their customers.

Discouraging Mischief

Having a secure host is the first line of defense. Secure hosts provide what is known as "security protocols"--four steps that ensure that data is not tampered with online. These four steps are "access control," "key management," provide an "encryption algorithm", and finally, "message integrity."

SSL is one of the most widely used security features on the Internet. Anytime a web address begins with "http," it's a sign that SSL is in place. SSL, which stands for "Security Sockets Layer," enacts all four of the above steps to provide superior online security. Data can be entered safely not only by users, but also by consumers. The information is encrypted into code as it's transmitted via the Web. This encryption makes it very difficult for third parties to "eavesdrop" or "steal" the information. If, against the odds, a malicious third party should manage to tamper with the information, an alarm via the "message integrity" system will immediately be activated.

Other things to look for in a secure osCommerce host are superior firewall protection, and secure access. Make sure that you have the option of "protected areas" which are accessible only to those with passwords. Choosing a host that does not provide this level of security is the same thing as hanging a sign in a store window that reads "Shoplifters welcome," or telling customers that you're going to post all their credit card and home address information on the community bulletin board.

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