Digital Marketing and Cyber Security Risk?
Digital marketing has now take cover the conventional marketing techniques. A digital marketing campaign involves, content writing, content marketing, and its promotion through social media, email marketing and customer relationship management. To fulfil all these requirements a lot of planning, time, effort and teamwork is required to produce great results.
However, this is essential for digital marketers to include cyber security measures to defend their IT assets, in order to make their digital marketing campaign successful as expected.
In a nutshell, cyber security is a major concern among digital marketers. Neglecting cyber security in digital marketing may result to drastic consequences on everything from a digital marketing firm‘s bottom line, to unsatisfied clientele, to endangering the online public at large.
There are vital points which the digital marketing firms should know in order to overcome cyber security challenges in digital marketing. To help keep digital marketers up-to-date with the latest security concerns online, we have gathered the following list of safety sore spots that they are likely to come across during work.
Common Cyber Security Mistakes done by Digital Marketers
Irrespective of the size of your brand or company, if you’ve presence, there’s a possibility you’ll experience a security breach. Digital marketers are not immune to this. In fact, since digital marketing acquired a broad audience, the risk has become higher. It’s crucial that digital marketers should stay up-to-date with the latest security concerns. Few common mistakes are:
- Not considering importance of cyber security in digital marketing.
- Revealing too much information(sometimes critical data) to the client while sharing the data
- Using weak passwords for digital marketing and social media accounts
- Clicking to malicious links and websites while sharing the data.
- Not updating their Word press or websites for common security threats.
- Not taking data backups on regular basis for the contingencies.
- Copying and sharing malicious links to clients.
- Not taking any formal and informal cyber security training.
- Not considering encryption like techniques while storing and sharing critical data.
Methods to overcome Cyber Security Challenges in Digital Marketing
Follow and Work with Cyber Security Firms
Digital Marketers should keep in touch with online Cyber Security firms to know about security-related issues. One can take professional help to find out the existing vulnerabilities in their systems. Digital Marketers can work with security firms on a regular basis to ensure their marketing solutions uphold all current safety standards.
Digital Marketing firms can get acquainted with online security firms by interacting with the right people from the industry. This will without a doubt give savvy marketers an edge over their competitors, by providing better information on potential risks of a given marketing strategy.
Update your Word press Updates
Word Press is the most frequent website used by Digital Marketers, and the most accessible means of attack for a hacker is to exploit outdated software components of such a site. Using out-of-date versions of themes, plugins and core site components is similar to leaving the front door of your house unlocked.
Digital Marketers would have noticed that in last couple of years, applications are downloading software updates all the time. This is generally to patch the unintended security loopholes security teams find in Word Press like applications. Thus, Digital Marketers using such applications should take care to update their software as soon frequently as possible. One can also enable auto updates in order to ensure your Word press remains updated date every time
User Account Management
User account Management is a critical part of digital marketing, since marketers sometimes get special user accounts to manage particular site features. It is very important to this in a responsible manner. Cyber threats often come from compromised user accounts, and since digital marketer accounts often have higher permissions, they pose a higher security risk.
Therefore websites owners should always lookout for suspicious user behaviour, including excessive access requests, changes in account information, daily downloads, etc. A digital marketer working for a website should try to access it from a single IP address, as access attempts from different IPs can be interpreted as a sign of suspicious behaviour
Use encrypted Email Marketing services
If any unauthorized user or hacker, logs in to an email account in a fraudulent way, they can send spam, virus infections and phishing emails to your contacts. And as ISPs and web search engines have highly active spam filters, they can blacklist your email ids which can put a ‘full stop’ on your email marketing future.
So, digital marketing firms should use software that will provide monitoring and security for their email messaging service through encryption. Also, a security audit from time to time should be done to keep your email system safe and secure from unwanted intrusions.
Implementing Password Management Policy
Having a good password policy and adhering its will definitely be helpful in digital marketers. Such polices will compel the digital marketers for using strong passwords and changing it on regular time intervals. Strong passwords are difficult to crack and less susceptible to guessing.
Secure your CRM adequately
A CRM(Customer Relationship Management) helps in building a strong relationship with your customers with an ease. So using a SSL(Secure Sockets Layer) protocol, like HTTPS on the website helps in keeping the data transfer in an encrypted form which makes it hard for unauthorized user and hackers to snoop into the access. Also, ensure that your CRM systems have strict data security policies in place for the staff while accessing sensitive data.
Handling Transaction Data Securely
Customer PII (Personally Identifiable Information), such as payment data is lucrative prospect for hackers, that’s why e-commerce websites are constantly being attacked
Viruses and malware are usually the culprit behind these attacks, so it is essential to have everyone working for the site acquainted with the proper anti- virus and anti-malware measures.
An additional layer of encryption should be used for files, that contains transaction data, ensuring that even in the event of a security breach, the compromised data will not be accessed by hacker or unauthorized person.
Social Media Marketing Security
Sometimes digital marketers share data irresponsibly over social media, which can invite trouble and might also grab the attention of hackers. It may also lead to a situation where the social media accounts are hijacked to spread malicious posts or fraudulent and embarrassing info that can spoil your online reputation.
So, digital marketing firms should establish a security policy for their social media activity like using strong passwords, preventing spams, blocking phishing scams, and avoiding suspicious add-ons or apps that may disburse malware.
Always give social media access to trusted employees and educate them on how to act responsibly and lessen risks. This will help in keeping the social media marketing campaigns safe from cyber threats.
Cyber Security is one of the most neglected thing in any online business and this includes digital marketing. By identifying what the threats are, what kind of damage they can do, and how to mitigate those threats is essential for succeeding in the business, so digital marketers should take special steps to work on the latest cyber security trends.
If your email campaign is having low open rates then it might mean that your emails are going to spam folder or are getting flagged by spam filters in customer’s inbox.
Nowadays spam filters have become spam filters has become rigorous and that have become the main reason for avoiding going to spam folder.
Reasons Why Emails Go to Spam
There are multiple factors that help in determining the cause of emails going to spam folder. Here are a few reasons:
1. You Didn’t Get Express Permission to Email
When we buy email address and send bulk emails then we are violating the CAN-SPAM ACT and that may be subject to heavy penalties. So to get express permission to email, you should make a form on your website that makes everything clear that visitors are subscribing to your mailing list.
We recommend not adding emails manually as that might violate the CAN-SPAM Act.
2. Your IP Address Was Used for Spam
If you have never sent spam emails but still your emails are flagged as spam then might be your IP Address was used by someone else for the spamming purpose.
Let’s take an example: If we send emails through MailChimp, your emails are delivered through their server, so even if other customers of MailChimp send spam then it could affect your deliverability as well.
3. You Have Low Mailbox Usage
In The spamming filtering algorithms, mailbox providers check the ratio of active and inactive email accounts. An Inactive account means an account that has not been used in a long time or is rarely used over a period of time.
To prevent this you should clean your email list within time spam to keep a check of active and inactive users
4. Your Subject Line is misleading
As the CAN-SPAM Act states that if your subject is misleading someone to view the message then it is against the law.
Here are some examples:
- Did I leave my wallet at your place? – This is a message that make it look like they know you personally.
- RE: CURRENTLY OUT OF OFFICE – This will appear like a work-related message.
- Urgent – Update your information in bank account xxxxxxxxxx9865 – This there is something related to your bank account.
5. Your “From” Information (email address) is Inaccurate
This is also stated against the CAN-SPAM Act to mislead anyone with your “from” email address and “to”, “reply-to” email address and routing the wrong information
Let’s take an example: if you send an email “from” The President, then that would be illegal
So to avoid this you should mention your name in “from” so that your subscribers remember your email just by your name
6. You Might have Used Spam Trigger Words
Some spamming filters are triggered by some words in a subject line or in the body of your email. Like:
- Cancel subscription any time
- Moner or check orders
- Click here
- Toll-free or Free
- Great Offers
- Order Now
- Your HTML Emails Don’t Follow Best Practices
You don’t have to worry if you are sending text-only emails. But to attract more customers you might have to send some fancy HTML emails also.
However, you have to follow some steps for sending HTML emails so that they go in the spam box
- Use a maximum width of HTML from 600 to 800 pixels. This will allow emails to look perfect on every screen size
- Keep your HTML code simple and clean. If you are coding yourself an HTML template then make it simple and code should be clean so that it is easy to be read by every mailing server and if you are using a template of mailing servers[like mailchimp] then its OK
- Keep your image-to-text ratio low: your campaign should have email and text both, do not send only images
- Optimize all your images for email: Compress your images to lower their resolution as high-resolution images are difficult to load because of their size.
- Never use obscure fonts. Always use normal fonts that work well on all the platforms like Arial, Verdana times new roman etc.