Websites are an integral part of the business. That’s the reason you protect your website from hackers. You think there is nothing on-site that’s worth being hacked. But you are mistaken. Websites are compromised most of the time. Websites breach is not for stealing the data. It happens to use your server to set up a temporary server or serve files for the illegal issue. Even some use it as an email relay for spam.
According to a survey, 43% of victims of data breaches are small businesses. You have worked hard on your website for your business. That’s the reason you need to protect your website from hacking and other issues. In this article, you will learn about tips to protect your website.
Security Tips to Protect Your Website from Hackers
1- Install Plugins
If your website is built on CMS, you can enhance your site’s security by installing plugins. Plugins are useful tools as they prevent the website from hacking. Each CMS options have plugins options available. In which many of them are free to use.
WordPress security plugins are:
- Bulletproof security
- iThemes Security
Magento Security Plugins are:
- Watchlog Pro
Moreover, websites with CMS or HTML pages can consider SiteLock. SiteLock is software that closes security loopholes. It offers daily monitoring from malware detection to vulnerability identification. I recommend SiteLock as it worth it.
2- Keep Software Up-To-Date
It’s important to keep all software updated. It applies to both the server operating system and the server running on the site. When a website’s security is identified, then hackers try to abuse them.
If a hosting service manages your website, then you don’t have to worry. The hosting company handles and updates security updates for the operating system themselves. But, if you are using third-party software, then you should quickly ensure security patches. Many firms use tools like npm or Composer to manage their software system. But fails to keep track that can be risky. You need to check and keep yourself updated to protect your website. Even you can use tools like Gemnasium to get fast notifications when a vulnerability is highlighted.
3- Watch out for SQL injection.
SQL injection is also known as SQLI. Usually, it’s a common attack vector that uses SQL code for backend database influence to access the hidden data. That information holds important or sensitive data of the company. You can prevent SQL injection attacks by following these steps:
- Validate User Inputs.
- Sanitize Data by Limiting Special Characters.
- Enforce Prepared Statements and Parameterization.
- Use Stored Procedures in the Database.
- Actively Manage Patches and Updates.
- Raise Virtual or Physical Firewalls.
- Harden Your OS and Applications.
4- Protect against XSS Attacks
An XSS attack is known as Cross-site attacking. It’s a common attack vector that injects malicious code into the exposed web application. It is different from other web attack vectors like SQL injection. In this, the application is not the target. But, the users of web applications have to face the consequences.
- You can escape user input. Its is a primary way to prevent XSS attack. Through escaping, you inform the web browser that the data you are sending should be treated as data. And it shouldn’t be interpreted in any way.
- You can validate input. It’s a process that ensures the application is rendering the correct data. And it protects the malicious data from harming the site.
- You can even sanitize the user input to protect your website from XSS attacks.
Remember, you need to use all three methods to protect your website from XSS attacks. Using any one of them cant battle XSS attack alone.
5- Be aware of Error Messages.
Error messages can harm your website too. That’s why it’s important to be careful with error messages. You need to provide minimal information in error messages to your customers. It will ensure that they won’t leak any important details that are present on your server. You can keep detailed errors in the server logs that are not accessible to the users. And only show information to the users they need.
6- Use HTTPS
HTTP stands for “Hypertext Transfer Protocol.” It’s a protocol that allows the transfer of data over the web. It’s the part of internet protocol that defines command and service. It is used for broadcasting data.
Using HTTP is important in your site to protect your website. Without HTTP, the website is insecure and causes you many problems. Moreover, even Google has declared that sites with HTTP will rank higher in search results. That means HTTP is SEO-friendly too.
You can use Let’s Encrypt software. It offers free and automated certificates to enable HTTPS. Even there are community tools with a wide range of platforms that can set you up.
7- Get Website Security Tools
Website security is a challenging task. It’s a continuous process that needs constant evaluation to decrease the risk of hacking. You can use security tools to protect your website. They aim to highlight the attempts when someone compromises your site.
Some free and excellent tools are:
- Netsparker: it’s an amazing tool that tests SQL injections and XSS. It has a free community edition and trial version available for the users.
- OpenVas: it’s the most advanced open-source tool that protects your website. Its test vulnerability and other website issues can cause problems.
- SecurityHeader: is recommended by professional website designers. It’s a free tool that available online that helps to protect your website.
- Xenotix XSS Exploit Framework: it’s a tool from OWASP. Professional web designers and developers highly recommend it.
8- Have Strong Passwords
It’s important to have strong passwords to protect your website. According to professional web designers, secure websites depend on secure postures. Hackers can easily access your site. There are many breached passwords online that hackers can combine ad generate a list of potential passwords. The best practices for you to have strong passwords are:
- Don’t reuse your passwords.
- Have long passwords with 12 characters.
- Try to use random passwords. That would be difficult for password-cracking software to cracks yours.
9- Have Website Backup
As mentioned above, a website can be hacked easily. That means you can face major security incidents. That’s why having website backup is essential to recover from a major incident. It’s not a website security solution, but it’s a way to recover your damaged files. And many professional web designers suggest having website backups for emergencies.
The best backup should fulfill the following needs:
- The backup needs to be off-site. If the backup is stored on the server, there are chances of attack.
- Backup should be automatic. In a hectic schedule, you may forget to backup your site. That’s why it needs to be automatic.
- It should offer reliable recovery. Test them to make sure it works properly.
These 9 tips are a great way to protect your website from the risk of hacking. I hope you enjoyed the article and found it useful.