Its not a secret – without the proper web security, web site data and files can easily be damaged, changed or stolen. The integrity of your company or your name can be compromised. Your money as well as consumer identities, credit card information (if you have e-commerce web site) are put in jeopardy when protection of a web site and the server isn’t given the top priority.
Website security is a fundamental part of the success of your online business. Making it a priority is critical to your credibility as well as the protection of you and your customers. If you use “password” as your password for everything and have three-year old antivirus software, you are very attractive target to hackers. To protect your business’s reputation and your customers’ information, here are some basic tips for you to consider:
1. Password Should Be Difficult!
One of the simplest ways to improve security is to use strong password and use different ones for your email, banking info, your cPanel,social media accounts and your FTP accounts. When selecting passwords, use both lowercase and uppercase letters, include at least one number. Use at least 7 characters, anything less is considered far too easy to hack. You can increase your password security even more by adding a punctuation character. Just don’t make it too difficult to type or too long to remember. “Password1” is obvious and very easy to guess, as well as using your name or “username” as your password. “$bmMB9889” is very secure, while still being memorable. This kind of password will be very difficult to crack than your pet’s name or your birth date.
2. Change Passwords Often.
After a developer has finished your project ALWAYS change your passwords. It is completely up to you how often you want to change your passwords, but do it at least once in 6 months (some experts advise changing all passwords every 30 days!).
3. Keep Your Software Up-To-Date.
Make applications or website just tough enough to brake by downloading the newest versions and updates of WordPress, Windows and your antivirus platform. This includes any plugins, themes and extensions that accompany scripts. Don’t forget to update your software! Your computer can become an easy target for unscrupulous security crackers if you ignore security updates for too long.
4. Backup! Backup! Backup!
One of the most important ways of protecting yourself from disaster is to back up your data. Without data backup you are running the risk of losing your data. The last thing you want to find when you’ve been attacked and need to re-install your blog is that you don’t have a current database backup. Make it a habit to backup your site regularly!
Having a backup handy will save you time, money and sleepless nights. There could be hundreds of scenarios where you would need a backup.
5. Don’t trust public networks!
You probably love to hang out at you local coffee shop, but do you trust your coffee shop? Of course, you can use a wireless network there if you are smart and careful about security. Try to avoid connecting from networks with unknown or uncertain security characteristics or from those with known poor security. This is especially important whenever you must log in to Web site or the server for some purposes or otherwise access secure resources.
6. Closer look at your links.
One of the main causes for attacks that are perpetrated through browsers are so-called “open redirects”. Do you really know what kind of site you’re linking to from your site? Putting bad links on you site is always a bad idea. Make sure any site you link to is completely trustworthy.
7. Any good hosting out there?
Not all hosts are the same when it comes to ensuring your website’s security. Not all of them can offer round-the-clock active server monitoring. Choose a host that takes your security seriously! It is always better to have some-one to call in case of emergency, so look for hosting with 24/7 support. That way you can contact the support team to get your problem resolved any time of day (or night). Some protection is NOT cheap and can cost you an arm (+leg) so shop around and do some research.
8. Be Smart!
Make your site secure by regularly scanning your log files for code that doesn’t belong. Don’t allow anonymous comments with suspicious links on your blog. Do not install suspicious WordPress plugins and be aware of what’s going on inside your site.
9. Don’t share your login!
Shared login credentials can cause a lot of problems for security. Someone can change the password and not tell you and lock you out. The more login credentials are shared, the greater the number of problems you can be having. Do not keep your password taped to the screen of your computer or laptop! Always log out of any confidential systems or sign off the system completely after you are finished working with it.
Make it a habit to keep an eye on things and keep everything up to date. If you are committed to protecting your data, hackers will have a much harder time to brake your web site and hopefully won’t be able to succeed. Many people are just unaware of their own vulnerability, hackers play with enough websites and eventually they find a vulnerable one to exploit. That web site doesn’t have to be yours!