By Sahil Sharma
An organization’s website is its biggest digital asset and should be treated as such. As your website grows and delivers more complex functionalities, the security risk grows with it.
According to a recent study, over 30,000 websites are hacked every day, with 20 million breaches in a month.
64% of businesses around the world have experienced some form of cyber threat at least once – revealed during the same survey.
These stats are a wake-up call for business owners living in a delusion that their website is safe. However, it’s only a matter of time before a hacker decides to cast a net for your website.
You might think you have nothing to lose, but hackers these days can bring firms to their knees by taking over their websites and everything that goes with it, including clients’ sensitive information and credentials.
If you think your current security measures are strong enough to prevent a cyber intrusion, you may be mistaken. Modern-day hackers have developed sophisticated programs that can erase your website’s data or leave malware in your web system which hampers your website’s performance as well as overall user experience.
Here’s the Solution
A quick audit can identify security loopholes and malware which may be putting your website at high risk. Using a website malware removal tool, you can get rid of any malicious code that may have penetrated your website’s line of defense like a Trojan Horse.
Even if your website is free from malware, it is still vulnerable to various other forms of cyber threats and ransomware attacks. Some of these attacks can have consequences of sweeping proportions. For example, in 2016, Uber lost the data of 57 million riders and drivers due to a data breach. It went all over the news and created panic among businesses that rely on their websites for revenue.
A bit concerned about your website?
Read on to know how you can prevent security threats to your website in 2021 and give your users a safe browsing experience.
This is one of the fundamental elements that every website needs in 2021 and beyond. An SSL certificate indicates that your website offers a safe browsing experience to its users. Even if your website does not have a payment gateway, it is recommended to install SSL anyway since it builds trust with your visitors and deters hackers from prying into your website.
Your visitors can quickly identify whether your website is secure or not. Websites with SSL certificates show HTTPS in the address bar instead of HTTP, prefixed with a ‘secure’ icon and a padlock.
As per the recent update, Google now alerts users visiting a website without SSL, which can break the trust factor and may result in a significant decline in SERP rankings too.
Use Strong Passwords
Passwords are invented for a reason, but most users take them for granted until something bad happens. Especially when you are using business accounts, make sure you don’t leave the front door wide open, so to speak.
That said, don’t use simple passwords, as they are easy to crack. Use a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters, as recommended by various online portals during sign-ups. A strong password that is easy to remember goes a long way.
Most people find it difficult to remember their passwords and keep going through the password reset cycle. To avoid that, you can use an encrypted password manager to store and retrieve passwords with ease. And make sure your passwords across important accounts are changed every two weeks.
Never Miss Out on Website Updates
No matter which platform your website uses, it should be updated regularly to keep bugs, glitches, and hackers at bay. For example, if your WordPress dashboard prompts a new software update or minor updates for plug-ins and additional widgets, don’t ignore the pop-up message. These updates are crucial to your website’s performance and security.
Ignoring these updates will make your website outdated and highly susceptible to glitches and cyber attacks.
Be Wary of Sketchy Emails
For those who didn’t know, over 92% of malware is delivered via email. First of all, don’t use your admin email address for random sign-ups on the Internet. Once hackers have access to your email address, they will start sending messages with clickable links. Don’t fall for clever subject lines promising an attractive deal on the other side.
Mark these emails as spam and trash them forever.
In most cases, it is possible to avoid a cyber attack. But if an attack happens despite your security measures, make sure you are prepared beforehand. Making backups of your website regularly is one of the easiest ways to prevent data loss. Choose a website host that offers regular backups as part of the package so that you don’t have to do it manually.
And one of the most important takeaways is to not do anything that makes it easier for hackers to break in. Putting effort into your website security is worth it.
Sahil Sharma is a technical writer with a major in Software Engineering and acquired an interest in cyber security, website development, and digital marketing. When he’s not writing, Sahil likes to swing by a local coffee shop and read books on persuasion and marketing.