On Tuesday, Facebook has announced that the introduction of carts to WhatsApp. With the new feature, users will be able to browse a catalog, select multiple products and send the order as one message to the business. This will make it simpler for businesses to keep track of order inquiries, manage requests from customers and close sales.
With many people opting to shop online, it is in the retailers best interest to try and make the purchasing process as easy as possible by offering multiple avenues by which customers can interact with them.
However, with this approach comes challenges. Customers can inadvertently send sensitive personal information through insecure mechanisms, or worse still, untrained staff could ask for information from customers over different channels.
More importantly, this opens up multiple avenues for cyber criminals who can target unsuspecting customers with social engineering scams through these channels.
Therefore, organisations and customers need to balance out the ease of sale with security, and be aware of what information they are providing to who and over which channels.
This move by Facebook and WhatsApp is a clear indication of where consumerism is heading and what consumers of the future will look like. They want instant access and the ability to make purchases on the platforms which they are comfortable with. Therefore, fraud prevention, as well as user awareness, has to underpin it all – because no doubt cybercriminals will be waiting in the wings and adapting their tactics to infiltrate these channels.