9 Ways to Improve Your Small Business' Website Security
Many websites are hacked a great deal in various manners. Consequently, the necessity to strengthen your website security continues to be essential for each internet user.
In these cases, hackers are relentlessly invading non-protected websites on a regular basis. It goes without saying that if you fail to concentrate on essential security measures, eventually you will find yourself caught in the hackers' clutches.
Furthermore, you are likely to neglect the information, resulting in a diversion of resources you invested in a marketing strategy development for your business. Nowadays, setting up a website is a lot simpler than ever before. In any case, this doesn’t alter the fact that cybersecurity is a vulnerable area.
In this blog post, we'll cover 7 essential website security tips you should follow to protect your sensitive information from threats. Fortunately, there are numerous methods you can employ to defend your business against hackers, no matter your business size or cost.
1. Choose a reliable web hosting provider
When selecting a hosting provider for your website, it’s important to pick one that has a good reputation and a solid track record of providing high-quality service. How can you tell if the web hosting company you want to employ is up to the challenge?
As a starting point, try to check their security features beforehand. This is one of the most important areas of consideration when choosing a hosting provider. It’s essential that they use the latest software and systems to ensure that your website will be protected when it goes live. You should make sure they apply updates promptly. Website security is an ongoing process, and part of that process involves applying software updates on an ongoing basis especially when new bugs are discovered in existing code. A reliable web hosting provider will keep their servers updated constantly so you don’t have to worry about being left behind with outdated code susceptible to hackers.
Regular checks should be done to ensure the website availability is consistent. When a server goes down, it becomes unavailable for anyone trying to access your business website including potential customers. Make sure you pick this type of business provider before signing any contracts or starting work with them so there won’t be any issues later on, down the line. Consider also checking out this guide to catch up on my top tweets about website security.
Incorporating highly interactive elements into your website will encourage users to remain engaged and entice them to keep going back for more. Thus, tweets are accompanied by animated icons so you can get a better understanding about complex things.
Keep an eye on customer service standards during your dealings as you never know what might happen in future years but better safe than sore. It's also worth noting that not all providers offer 24/7 support; some may only be available during normal working hours. If such a thing happens, consider shopping around until you find one that offers more comprehensive protection or at least get rid of your current provider if they don't meet the requirements right away.
2. Download and install an SSL certificate
The SSL certificate is an extremely straightforward and cost-effective way to secure a website. Using a SSL certificate enables an encryption-secured channel that connects a browser and a web server. It provides a safe medium to transmit confidential details including financial information, account information, logins, and so on. As soon as you activate an SSL certificate for your website's server, it turns on the lock icon and the “https” protocol enables safe contact via your browser.
In the long run, your company would reap the rewards from installing an SSL certificate on your website by providing you greater trustworthiness among your customers. When customers see that “https” protocol and lock icon indicating your website is using encryption technology, they will be more likely to visit or complete transactions on your online store. Additionally, search engines like Google may give higher rankings to websites with SSL certificates because they are more reliable and trustworthy than websites not using them. The advantages of an SSL certificate extend beyond security: it's also crucial for small businesses looking to establish trust with website visitors and enhance their search engine optimization efforts and rankings.
3. Ensure that all your software and apps are constantly upgraded with the latest security upgrades
If you have a computer, smartphone or tablet, then you’re probably familiar with software updates. But did you know that these regular updates contain important security upgrades that help keep your device from being exposed to hackers? That's right! Updates are released whenever Vue developers find a security hole in their software or operating system.
Think about the apps and website tools on which your business depends: how often do they release updates? Do you rely on any software or plugins for which updates aren’t available?
The most important thing to do is to make sure that everything from your PC’s operating system to the content management system and content strategy behind your website is up-to-date. If it's not possible to automate the update process, then it would be a good idea to manually check for updates at least once a month, and apply them as soon as they become available.
As long as it's not possible to update an application because of compatibility issues, or since the company behind it has gone out of business, then it's better to replace it with something else. After all, if there aren't any more updates coming down the pipe and consequently no bug fixes, then that means you're leaving yourself open to attack from any vulnerability that may arise in the future.
4. Use strong passwords
The first line of protection against hackers is to ensure everyone with access to your website’s backend has a strong password. Hackers often target websites by guessing passwords, so you want to make it as difficult as possible for them to log in.
There are a few ways to go about this, but the easiest is using a password manager or password generator (such as LastPass or RoboForm). Not only do these sites help keep track of your passwords, they also generate new ones automatically.
These tools will give you a string of random letters and numbers that would be impossible for any human to memorize. But don't worry while you might not remember what your password is, the browser extension will. And since they are fully randomized, you won't have to worry about hackers figuring them out with simple guesswork.
5. Limit user permissions on your website
Each person who has access to your website should have a unique username and password that gives them the appropriate level of access to your website.
For instance, if you have multiple people working on your website, each person should only be able to edit sections of the website they directly oversee.
A web developer should not be able to log into the administrative panel and make changes to sensitive information like customer data integrity or billing information.
Limit the number of administrator accounts, especially those with full admin privileges when setting up users for your website. Give out full administrator access only in extreme cases, and in most cases it's sufficient to give users lower levels of permissions (for example, only allowing them to create new blog posts or edit old ones).
6. Utilize network firewalls and VPNs
Even though the Internet offers enormous benefits, it can also be a major security threat. Protecting your network is vital to protecting your business. Firewalls protect networks from some of the most common types of attacks that affect businesses, including:
Denial of Service (DoS) attacks – these are attempts to flood a network with traffic and prevent legitimate requests from reaching their destinations, causing resource-intensive systems to slow down or crash.
Data theft – this happens when an attacker gains access to a system and steals sensitive information like usernames and passwords.
Social engineering – this is the process of convincing employees to give up information through psychological manipulation.
Spam – this is unsolicited email sent by attackers with malicious intentions on behalf of other parties who pay money for their messages.
Choosing a VPN is another way to bypass the most frequent security threats, such as phishing threats. VPNs bring a range of advantages, from privacy and anonymity to security and encryption. When it comes to VPN for torrents, opt for the best ones with robust security to keep your data safe with no breaches.
7. Conduct regular server backups
Ideally, businesses should have a large number of servers, but it also means that if one server fails the business is forced to share its data with all of them. In addition to that risk, many small-business websites lack proper security measures and precautions.
To avoid these pitfalls, it's important to take care of backups regularly and make sure that they are as secure as possible. To do this:
Purchase a high quality backup solution.
Use some type of automatic backup software.
Store the backups on external storage.
Use multi-factor authentication.
Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is an important cybersecurity tool for small businesses to use. It's especially helpful in situations where employees are working remotely and need access to the company's online services. In such cases, MFA can be a potential lifesaver.
MFA goes beyond a simple username and password. Once you've set up the feature, it will ask you for additional verification before granting access to your information. This extra layer of security helps prevent unauthorized users from logging into your accounts with stolen credentials.
There are many different types of authentication methods, including biometrics, physical tokens, and one-time password generators that send asynchronous messages. Which ones you choose will depend on the needs of your business: physical tokens can be expensive but provide good protection against hackers, while text messages and email codes may be easier on your budget but not as secure as other solutions.
In summary, there are various strategies and tips you can put into practice to protect your business against attacks, regardless of your business size or cost. Consider the above-mentioned tips to better comprehend how to maximize the security on your website.
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