Retailers are remaining aware of security risks in the months following the holidays.

The holiday season is nearing its end, but retailers are remaining vigilant about their security systems. Since November and December typically bring a sharp increase in the number of general transactions every store fulfills, cyber-criminals have more opportunities to steal customers’ payment information.

Even in the months following the holiday season, security experts warn customers to check their accounts more frequently and be on the lookout for suspicious activity. American retailers are particularly vulnerable because most are still using antiquated card swiping technology. Between the swipe and the time when the data is encrypted, there is about a one millisecond window of opportunity for cyber-criminals to steal the information.

It’s also difficult for businesses to defend against hackers, simply because malware evolves so quickly and cyber-criminals use extremely sophisticated technology.

“This is one of the major reasons why a command and control network is part of commercial malware,” said malware expert Kevin McAleavey to CSO. It gives the controllers the ability to update and replace their malware as soon as it is detected by antivirus software, with improved, and once again undetectable, replacements.”

This is why it’s so important for point of sale computer systems to support up-to-date anti-malware technology and security measures. Businesses will be required to support EMV chip-and-PIN cards by October of 2015 in order to follow PCI regulations.

Ensure that your business is using a network that is secure, because both you and your customers deserve to be protected. The backlash of a data breach can be severe, as we’ve seen with Target over the past year, so it’s better to take precautionary measures. Visual Retail Plus can help you upgrade your systems so you’re more secure than ever.