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Brexit makes payment protection more important than ever


The UK’s referendum on its position in the European Union (EU) was always going to have an effect on the global financial markets, regardless of which way the pendulum of public support swung. However, following the narrow victory for the ‘leave’ vote, the Great British Pound (GBP) experienced one of its biggest drops against the dollar for more than 30 years.

No financial market, especially the currency market, likes uncertainty and with the UK’s economic position now in a state of limbo, the price of GBP has fallen sharply against the dollar. Naturally, there are winners and losers on both sides of the coin when it comes to fluctuating currencies.

UK businesses looking to purchases goods and services from abroad will have to pay more thanks to the weaker pound. Similarly, travelers wanting to purchase a currency such as dollars will get less for their money.

Brexit’s Positives and Negatives

However, for exporters the drop in the value of GBP means foreign buyers are essentially getting more bang for their buck and will, therefore, be more likely to buy. Indeed, the five-day trading results for British exporter Rolls Royce certainly made for pleasant reading, with share prices increasing by 19.50%.

While the almost ethereal movements of money within the world of big business are often the focus for national media outlets, it’s important to consider smaller businesses and investors in the current climate. Indeed, one of the major trends online businesses could see in the coming months is a reluctance by British citizens to spend, but greater activity from overseas customers.

On one side of the equation, British consumers will not only be worried about increased prices, but with their currency in a state of flux they won’t want to put their own finances under any unnecessary pressure. Conversely, with UK goods now cheaper for non-native consumers, online businesses making sales overseas could see their profits soar in the coming months.

Online Security is Crucial Following Brexit

However, whichever way the currency cookie crumbles, consumer protection will be crucial. Online shoppers will want to know that when they make a purchase that they are safe. For business owners this means taking Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) guidelines seriously. Using the right technology to ensure the meet PCI DSS requirements could make the difference between a Brexit boom and a Brexit bust for many small businesses.

Fortunately, PCI DSS-compliant software is now readily available and, more importantly, affordable. Thanks to cloud-based technology such as web application firewalls (WAFs), online outlets can protect their businesses from common attacks, such as cross-site scripting (XSS) which can cause personal data to be lost.

Indeed, with the Ponemon Institute stating the average cost of a security breach is $174 per record, there’s a clear need for proper security when it comes to handling online transactions. With consumers now likely to be more wary of spending their money on, it stands to reason that the less secure they feel, the less likely they will be to make a purchase.

Brexit Business Boom Possible

While Brexit has certainly led to uncertainty in the financial markets, one thing online business should be certain about is making sure they protect their assets and customers. In fact, if there’s to be any silver lining in the current situation, it’s that small businesses could boom in the coming months, but only if PCI DSS-compliant security software remains an integral part of their virtual operations.

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