It seems like every day we hear about another website being hijacked, or attacked in order to get user information or to be used as a temporary web server to host illegal files. So it is important to make sure that your website is secure not only for yourself but for your potential users. So how can you make sure your website is secure? Check out the tips below.
Require Strong Passwords
First and for most, you need to protect your server and website’s admin areas by using strong passwords. Every password should be unique to the login area. NEVER use a password more than once and don’t use a password from your website for your other personal logins, such as email and social media. If your password is discovered you want to make sure that only one area is affected. If remembering all those passwords seems impossible to use a password manager like Team Pass, to safely store and organize all your passwords. Team Pass can also create strong passwords for you, making it easier than ever to use secure passwords. You should also require your users to create strong passwords when they sign up for your service. Require them to use passwords that are a combination of letters, numbers and special characters as well as at least 8 characters in length. Keeping them safe, keeps you safe.
Use An SSL Certificate
SSL stands for secure socket layer. This means that your domain is given a secure connection between it, the internet browser and the web server. This allows websites to transmit private data online. The biggest benefit of SSL certificates is the added layer of encryption and verification. When data is sent through your site it is transmitted over an encrypted connection so that a third party is unable to see what is being sent. The SSL also checks that the information it receives is coming from the expected domain. So when your customer sends personal or private information, the certificate guarantees it is being sent to the secure site, and not to a potentially malicious one. SSLs also ensure data integrity because the information is no longer being sent in a plain text format from the server to the browser. This is important because when sent in plain text hackers have the ability to manipulate the information for their benefit. The SSL makes this information unreadable keeping your customer’s information safe from potential threats. The best part is the SSL certificates aren’t that expensive. No-IP sells a variety of certificates ranging from $70 to $450.
Keep Your Software Updated
It may seem like I am stating the obvious, but keeping your software up to date is a must. This means both your server’s operating system and any software you are running on your website, like a CMS or a forum. If a website has a security hole, hackers can easily abuse them. Most software vendors have RSS feeds or mailing lists where they will post about any security issues, they may also prompt you to update your software when you log in. When security patches are available to make sure to implement them immediately, to avoid a system breach. If you use a managed hosting services chances are you don’t need to worry about the updates as they will do them for you, but you should be aware of what their policy is regarding software updates.
By following the three steps above, you can feel confident your website is safe not only for you but for your users. Have other tips for making a website safer? Leave them in the comments below.