When it comes to the security of any modern business, web security is an important part of it because of the increasing importance of websites in the business world. If your website is not secure, you’ll leave a massive loophole in the security of your business that can lead to catastrophe. Therefore, it’s important that you pay serious attention to the security of your website. And how do you do that? By following some simple security procedures and putting some systems in place. In this article we’re going to tell you about 7 such simple steps that you can take today to protect your site against cyber threats. Let’s get started:
#1. Use strong passwords
The security of anything digital begins with a password. If your passwords are not strong enough, that’s a huge security lapse in itself and anyone can take advantage of it. Passwords that are easy to remember can be guessed by anyone, or cracked with help of trial and error attacks (i.e. brute force attacks). That’s why the passwords of logging into your server and your website’s dashboard should be strong ones that are hard to be cracked by any of these techniques. What such passwords look like? Well, a strong password is at least 8 characters long, consisting of both upper as well as lowercase characters along with symbols and numbers.
#2. Install a good firewall and antivirus on your server
Installing a modern web application firewall and antivirus program is the next necessary step to ensure the security of your website. While antivirus software protects your site against all sorts of malicious programs, web application firewalls protect your site against many common cyber attacks like Cross Site Scripting (XSS), Request Forgery, SQL injection, etc. These are the most common yet most deadly and effective types of cyber attacks that can be done on websites. If you can protect your site against them, you can significantly improve the security of your site by a huge margin so install a reputed antivirus and web application firewall.
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#3. Encrypt your customer data
Do you know what expands the scale and scope of any cyber attack? Data. The more the amount of stolen data, the more serious an attack and its consequences. In all types of cyber attacks the gravity of the situation is increased by the theft of customer data. If personal data of your customers – which they’ve given to you with trust – is stolen, then it can be a seriously threatening development for the existence and survival of your business. If you want to ensure that it doesn’t happen, encrypt your customer data. Wherever it’s stored it should be stored securely with strong encryption.
#4. Install SSL certificate on your server
Even if you’ve protected the data of your customers with encryption where it’s stored, it doesn’t immediately mean that no one can steal it. To ensure that you need encryption in one more place – during the transmission of data between you and your visitors. Encrypted storage of data (i.e. username, password, address etc.) can protect it while it’s at rest, but while it’s being sent by your customers to your server or by your server to their computer someone can steal it by capturing the data packets. To ensure that it doesn’t happen you need to have a wildcard SSL certificate installed on your server. What these certificates do is they instruct both Client (i.e. the computer of your user) as well as Server (where your site is hosted) to encrypt the data before it’s transmitted, so no one can steal it even if data packets are stolen.
#5. Enable real-time alerts
Knowing about an attack in time can help in minimizing the damage. Therefore, putting up arrangements in place to ensure that you come to know about attempts to attack your site in real time is also a part of the cybersecurity process. And while it may sound sophisticated, it’s not difficult and costly to add this security feature to your site. There are several website security apps and plugins available today that can be installed on the server to enable this functionality. You too should find out the right one for your site and install it before things go haywire.
#6. Regularly backup your data
We always try to ensure that we don’t get hacked. However, keeping a plan in place for the worst case scenario is also important. And the easiest way to minimize the damage in such a situation is to migrate to a new web server. In order to do that migration, you need to have your site data backed up in a secure place so you can put it back into the new server and start your site again with minimal loss of activity and records. Therefore, you should regularly backup your site data. Fortunately, it’s not too difficult to do that now because many tools are available to automate this thing. You just need to install and set up one of them on your site.
#7. Keep your eyes and ears open
Finally, the cybersecurity landscape keeps changing every day. New vulnerabilities are discovered and patched regularly, so it’s important to keep an eye on news related to hacking attempts, cyber threats and introduction of new cybersecurity tools to ensure the security of your site. By finding out vulnerabilities in the early stage of their exploitation and installing the latest security tools on your server as they hit the market you can sign up your game against cybercriminals.
So these were the 7 simple steps that you can implement to improve your website security. Whether it’s using strong passwords, installing a firewall, installing a wildcard SSL certificate or something else – all of them are important, so you must implement all of them. If you know of any other important steps that must be taken to ensure the security of websites, please share them in the comments. Also, let us know if you’ve any questions regarding any of the steps given above. We’ll try our best to respond to your comments at the earliest!