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Hack Attack How to protect your e-commerce site from hackers

By Tina Gasperson

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

In February, an unknown hacker typed in a command that caused aharem of slave computers called zombies to begin what is known as adistributed denial of service (DDoS) attack. Their target was giantportal site Yahoo!. The secret army of computers flooded Yahoo!servers with repeated requests for data, keeping almost alllegitimate visitors from reaching the site for three hours. In thedays that followed, copycat hackers had their way with some of thebiggest and busiest e-commerce and portal sites on the Internet.Microsoft, eBay, and Buy.com were just a few of the Goliathsknocked down, allegedly by the likes of a few David-sized teenhackers.

Though one arrest has been made (a 15-year-old has been chargedwith disabling Cnn.com), the DDoS attacks are still being seen as"victorious" and hordes of curious techno-wizards arenosing around in cyberspace right now, sniffing out unsecureservers on which to display their criminal prowess. And just incase you were feeling left out, rest assured: The big sitesaren't the only ones at risk. Smaller sites may be just asvulnerable to hacking, whether from unknown pranksters, thievesseeking your customer's financial information or saboteurs insearch of company secrets. But don't shut down your e-shopyet.

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