Today, building a website is incredibly simple. So simple that some sites can be designed, coded, and launched in a matter of hours, even minutes. This is due to tech — CMS like WordPress and Joomla, along with Website builders like Wix, giving us this superpower. Business owners, folks that had never before dabbled with creating a website, are now webmasters. It’s a massive opportunity with a rather BIG challenge they now have to face, website security. Now that responsibility falls on their shoulders. One of the most significant issues we constantly see at domainnetworks is this. Clients that fail to grasp the enormity and complexity of that task. A 2019 Google and the Harris Pool report revealed that although most people are now creating their sites, the vast majority have little to no knowledge of online security safety. They don’t know what a safe URL is or – given the rise of eCommerce – how to properly process credit card payments; they have almost no idea how to safeguard personal information and, in most cases, aren’t even interested in all those enterprises. They only want a website — security be damned. This article will give you an idea of the problems a security breach might bring you and how to take some simple yet essential steps to improve your website’s safety before it’s too late. A disclaimer from us at domainnetworks.com, there’s no such thing as a “hacker-free” site, and chances are sooner or later, you will get attacked; what matters is not only that you did your level best to prevent it, but how you acted when the boogeyman came knocking at your door.
The Online Sewer
Today, website safety should be every company’s number one priority. Keeping their data away from prying eyes, maintaining strict protocols, and implementing a fast- response to an attack are vital features of a company’s digital success. And why is that?
- It’s part of the law. Right now, there are different mandates and regulations every website should comply with. Depending on where you are, your business, and various other factors, you could be found at fault – and receive a heavy fine – if your website doesn’t adhere to specific preventive measures.
- Google all but demands it — part of your SER – Search Engine Result – that rating Google gives you, the one that helps you optimize your SEO, and how often Google shows visitors your site, depends on specific security certifications. If Google doesn’t see that your website has them, they more or less blackball you.
- The average attack on a company – according to the FBI – ends up costing a business about 5 million dollars. That’s a lot. And why is that? In many cases, companies will have to pay a ransom to obtain access to their info or find a specialist to edit out malware. That’s the first thing they will have to shell out for and the first ounce of blood. Then they will have to deal with downtime. The average recovery time for an attack is 21 days. For half of those days, your website will be on the fritz. That means you won’t be able to sell a thing or move stock. You’ll have zero revenue. Your second ounce of blood. Then there’s the hit you might take in the stock market – if you’re a publicly-traded company – when the news breaks. Also, the blow to your brand and reputation. By now, you’re leaking crimson all over the place. After that comes the lawsuits — not only from clients whose data you risked and exposed but from third-party vendors – since hackers could have used your vulnerability to attack them. Being the carrier of supply-chain attack, in many cases for some companies, is the equivalent of a headshot. And when you finally think you’re getting off the ground, you get kicked while you’re down. The Federales come in with handfuls of levies and fines. All of that amounts to 5 million dollars at least.
And those are just some of the many reasons why, at domainnetworks, we constantly urge our clients to think about their website’s security features and improve them. And to do it continually, to be on top of threats, and update their systems weekly at most.
How to Improve Your Website’s Security
Did you know that companies, primarily good tech companies, are constantly updating their software due to a new cyber threat? Updates are vital to the health and security of a website. Also, did you know that most of the time – 93% actually – an attack on your system is successful not because of faulty software but because of human error? One of the biggest is not taking update requests seriously and putting them on the back burner.
Try to maintain all your plugins, software, and platforms up-to-date. If possible, activate automatic updating. This is your top priority.
Add HTTPS and an SSL Certificate
Website safety 101 — you need a secure URL.
HTTPS stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure — this protocol prevents interception of private data during the transition. It secures your connection. If your website asks visitors to sign-up, exchange data, or make a transition, you need it.
SSL – Secure Sockets Layer – is yet another necessary protocol. It’s what transfers visitor info between your site and your database. SSL encrypts all that data.
This might seem like a no-brainer, but you have no idea how many times at domainnetworks we’ve encountered clients whose password is their kid’s name, the word “password,” or their social security number. Not only find a good password, one with a mixture of letters, numbers, and characters but have it stored in secure databases. In offline files, on fingerprint-secured smartphones, or on a different computer. Do not use information that can be easily found, such as birthdays, pet names, etc.
Also, if possible, after three or so months of trying to change your password to your website.
Quality Web hosting
Use quality, secure, premium web hosting services. One that provides features that protect your site. Features such as:
- Secure File Transfer Protocols.
- Rootkit Scanners.
- File backup services.
- Up-to-date security upgrades.
Record and limit User Access
Limit your employees’ access and always record it. It’s essential that not everyone can access everything. Initially, you might feel comfortable giving several employees high-level access to dashboard features and other sections of your website. Limit them. It would be best if you vetted your employees — in most cases, as we previously stated, the security breach will result from human error. Either accidental or malicious.
Domain networks is a great way to manage and organize your website’s content. Websites with domain networks can quickly and easily create, maintain, and update their websites content. Additionally, using a domain network can also help improve site speed. By connecting your websites together, you can reduce the amount of time it takes for your pages to load. VectorVest is one of the few companies that offer domain networks as a service. Domain networks are also a great way to safeguard your website’s privacy. By limiting user access to only authorized users, you can keep your website’s information safe from unauthorized access. Finally, we’ll provide some tips on how you can keep your website safe while it’s live so that you never have to worry about anything negative happening to it.