What is Risk Management?
The eCommerce industry continues to grow each year and with that, comes more job opportunities. One of the fastest growing segments is that of an eCommerce risk manager. There are some skills and understanding you’ll need to have to start off, but mostly understanding the problems and solutions available. As a Risk manager you will provides security and protection to consumers, merchants and banks during eCommerce transactions.
A risk managers job is to implement and execute operational practices that keep information secure. A breach of your database could mean bad press for your company and the potential loss of customers and revenue. The risk manager has the ability to mitigate all of these risks and make the online environment safer for everyone involved.
Job Requirements for an eCommerce Risk Manager
To protect your company and customers from risk while making online purchases, you need to follow proper protocols. Here, we’ve put together a list of essential functions of an eCommerce risk manager. This list is not exhaustive, but it gives you an idea of what the job looks like.
Within the realm of fraud prevention, there are several items the risk manager should be doing on a daily basis. Your specific duties may vary based on the tools available through your employer, but there are some basics that are non-negotiable. Most of them revolve around the screening process.
Screening for fraud should be a constant part of your routine. You should have tools installed that help you detect the following:
- High-risk transactions
- Potentially fraudulent international IP addresses
- Repeated purchases from the same IP address in a short period of time
- Activity that is considered unusual for a customer
In many cases, stolen credit card information is used to purchase high-ticket items. If you work in a business with high transaction averages, you’re more susceptible to fraudulent activity via eCommerce.
It’s not enough to just screen for fraud. You also have to implement tools to protect your customers from it. Improving your payment gateway system to include some fraud prevention measures is a great place to start. Risk managers can do this by using some of the following protocols:
- Address Verification System
- CVV/CVC approval
- Verifying customers through reverse directory services
The eCommerce risk manager should also explore the fraud prevention features of the merchant account for their business. Make sure your merchant account provider and payment processor follow all of the necessary PCI-DSS regulations and have them implemented correctly. Find out what types of risk management they offer and decide how you can work together to make the process seamless.
Another huge part of the risk manager’s job is the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS), otherwise known as PCI compliance. Being compliant with these standards is critical to any business who accepts card payments from their customers. These standards were designed to protect consumers from fraud as much as possible.
Adhering to PCI standards requires businesses to:
- Maintain a secure network
- Protect cardholder information
- Restrict internal access to payment information
- Track and document all access to cardholder data
Monitor and Avoid Chargebacks
Another risk associated with eCommerce is the amount of chargebacks your company receives. As the eCommerce risk manager, it’s your job to monitor this and find ways to reduce chargebacks. This is an area that will likely fall on multiple departments including risk management and customer service.
A chargeback happens when a customer requests that the funds from a purchase be returned to them. However, instead of asking the merchant to do this, they ask their card-issuing bank. Many chargebacks happen before the merchant ever knew there was a problem.
Risk managers should monitor chargebacks on a regular basis and try to find solutions. If chargebacks are happening regularly as a result of poor customer service, you’ll need to address this with your operations team. However, if chargebacks are happening that seem to be fraudulent, you may want to do some more investigating.
Awareness and Training
Every person who works in your organization should receive some level of training on eCommerce risk. The risk manager is often the most qualified person in the company to discuss this with other team members. This should be done on a consistent basis, and participation in the trainings should be tracked.
An eCommerce risk manager is responsible for educating others on the importance of fraud prevention and PCI compliance. They need to have a solid understanding of the risks associated with eCommerce and the potential impacts on the company as a result of fraudulent activity. Additionally, they need to be trained on their specific role in mitigating that risk. Some items may include:
- Logging out of their computer when they step away from their desik
- Maintaining a "clean desk" policy which states that they should not leave any sensitive information sitting out in plain sight
- Regularly changing their passwords to protect the company from potential threats
- Reporting suspicious behavior from customers or other associates immediately
A solid training program can make a huge difference on your company’s ability to mitigate fraud. If this falls into your job jar as the risk manager, take ownership of it and make sure your team has all the information they need.
It’s important to consider what the integration process will look like for your business. If you already have a payment gateway setup, you need to consider how to fit the crypto processor into that equation. If your current processor already has the capability, that’s awesome! If not, ask them about the integration process for both your website and your physical POS systems if you have a brick-and-mortar store.
Writing policies may or may not fall under the eCommerce risk manager’s job description, depending on the size of your company. However, it’s important to note that this could be a requirement for the job. Writing policy will help protect the company, educate the team, and set standards for how to operate the business.
Data security policies can be included in the FAQs section of the website, or somewhere else that consumers may look for information. This policy should include language about the specific fraud prevention tools you’re using to protect your customers’ data. You can include the logos of your security providers on this page, as well.
Last but not least, the risk manager can develop a set of “tips and tricks” for their customers. Giving information to customers about how they can keep their information safe will make them feel comfortable doing business with you. This can include tips and tricks for the customer on how they can keep their information safe while shopping online.
While this is not an exhaustive list of daily duties, it is an overview of what an eCommerce risk manager is responsible for on a daily basis. It can be a really exciting role because you have the opportunity to constantly make changes to improve your company’s security and digital footprint. If you enjoy identifying problems, implementing solutions, and protecting consumers from potential
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