We’ve all heard of horror stories of online hackers and the mountain of security threats towards successful business websites. In fact, as many as 30,000 websites get hacked daily.
As forgettable as website security may be, it is imperative for business owners to take the correct steps to protect their hard work from data misuse and deletion. Below are a few tips to help you keep your business website safe from harm.
Enforce the use of strong passwords
When devising a password for your business website’s login credentials, make sure to use a strong combination of uppercase letters, lowercase letters, symbols and numbers. If possible, also make your password longer than 15 characters. Reason being, hackers will find it virtually impossible to bruteforce into your account when your password’s characters are almost randomised and difficult to predict.
Use encryption on your login pages
Encrypt your website’s login pages so that important information (such as social security numbers, passwords and credit card numbers) are never mistakenly leaked. Encrypted data will make it difficult for any third party to make sense of it, hence increasing your website’s security levels.
Update your themes and plugins
Most websites are designed in WordPress – a free and open-source content management system written in PHP and paired with a MySQL or MariaDB database. As it is open-sourced, anyone can create a new theme or useful plugin that you can add to your site. This enhances your site’s functionality.
The down side of this is that themes and plugins need to be updated to their latest versions on an ongoing basis. If a theme or plugin is running an old version, there is a risk that it could be hacked.
Here are some tips of using WordPress plugins:
- Only install popular and highly rated plugins, otherwise you may be putting your site at risk by installing poorly maintained or insecure plugins
- Keep plugins updated to their latest versions, at all times
- Delete plugins when you stop using them, as this reduces risk
- Replace abandoned or removed plugins: if a plugin author stops working on their plugin or does not keep it compatible with the latest version of WordPress, it is time to find a replacement plugin.
Employ the use of anti-virus programs
You can use anti-virus programs to protect your business website by frequently scanning for security threats. Anti-virus programs can pick up even the most minute of security breaches, meaning they add a strong layer of security to your website. Most anti-virus programs come with free trials so be sure to try out a few first before committing to one. Make sure that their services meet your needs and their costs are in line with your budget.
Use a trustworthy website hosting company
Also make sure that the company hosting your website has adequate security measures to protect your website from external threats. More often than not, business owners will outsource their web design team so it is imperative that you do your research before committing to any one company’s services. Read independent reviews and recommendations online to form a better informed opinion on your website hosting company options.
If you are unsure, consider having a lawyer review their terms and conditions prior to you engaging their services. That way, you will know what you are covered for and more importantly, what you are not covered for.
Keep backup data
Despite all these added security measures, there may still be a risk of a hacker infiltrating your website and deleting your content. For this reason, it may be helpful to store a backup copy of your data in case things go wrong. This way, you can also experiment with your website’s design and content without worrying about accidentally deleting any important features of your website.
Keeping your website safe and secure is an absolute must for every business owner. Although it may be a little tedious to do so, it is always better to be safe than sorry, and by implementing the tips outlined above, you’re sure to eliminate all the threats and dangers of hackers from your website.