car wash

When Rose Royce was singing about working at the car wash in the 1970s, the job description didn’t include watching for hackers.

But today, even all those high-pressure water cannons can’t guarantee digital hygiene. Car washes have joined those businesses that need to prepare for possible data security attacks.

According to a recent article in an industry magazine, more carwashes are moving towards online and mobile application payment systems. They’re using point-of-sale and customer management software. That means, more carwashes could find themselves targeted by hackers, who have not exactly been discriminating in the past about where to look for valuable information. They’ve hit such diverse targets as hospitals, fast food restaurants and dating websites.

Another article recommended three guidelines for carwashes to keep customers’ information safe: getting proper network and server protections; adopting chip card readers; and maintaining physical data security by making sure files, boxes and drawers are stored securely.

This notion of protecting the personal information of customers at the car wash may seem extreme. But with unprecedented levels of connectivity—The Pew Research Center estimates that approximately 85 percent of people in the U.S. are regular Internet users—the risk of theft has never been greater.

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