Tips to secure your website
Sometimes we tend to underestimate the website security risks associated with hacking. This is the reason why many websites are compromised every day. Hacking is mostly executed by automated scripts that are written to exploit common website security issues. Here are our top six tips to help you secure your website
Prevent SQL Injection and Cross Site Scripting Attacks Using Parameter Queries
Cross-site scripting and SQL injections are the two main attack techniques that are used by hackers. In SQL injection, the attacker will try to use web form fields or URL parameters to manipulate your website database. The standard Transact-SQL is manipulated to modify the tables and recover data.
These two types of attack target websites that don’t implement validation mechanisms on their servers for input/output. Make sure that you perform validation both on the browser and server.
Use Strong Passwords and Change Them Regularly
In brute force attacks, hackers try to guess different username and password combination to try and gain unauthorized access to your website database. This has been the most prevalent type of website attacks over the last couple of years.
Thousands of such attacks are detected on a daily basis. The most effective way of eliminating such kind of attack is by using strong password combinations. Make sure that your website server, database, and admin passwords are strong enough. A robust password is a combination of symbols, alphanumeric characters, upper and lower case letters and should be at least 12 characters long.
You should also avoid using the same password for different website logins. Make sure that you change your password after every two weeks to keep it double secure.
Restrict File Uploads from Users
Allowing users to upload any files to your website can be a significant website security risk even if it is to change their primary details. Any file uploaded to your website no matter how innocent it may look could contain a script that when executed on your website server could open up your site to numerous attacks.
Treat all files uploaded on your website with high suspicion. If you are allowing users to upload images to your site, the file extension alone shouldn’t make you trust them. Even pictures can carry dangerous self-executing PHP codes that could bring down your site. The only sure of preventing this from happening is by stopping all users from being able to execute any file they upload.
Install Security Plugins
Installing plugins is a great way of enhancing the security of your website which actively prevents any hacking attempts. It is one of the most implemented ideas of how to secure your website. If your website is running on WordPress, you will need to install plugins such as iThemes Security and Bulletproof security.
If you are running a CMS-managed site or simple HTML pages, SiteLock can play an important role eliminating all weak points that can be exploited by hackers. This is achieved through daily monitoring of everything including vulnerability identification, virus scanning, and malware detection.
Switch to HTTPS
Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is a secure communications protocol which is mainly used to transfer sensitive information between the server and the website. Moving from HTTP to HTTPS involves adding an encryption layer of Secure Socket Layer (SSL) making it secure from any hacking attempts. HTTPS is critical for all online transactions.
Keep Everything on Your Website Updated
Keeping your software update is critical in your efforts to secure your website. Make sure that you update all the software that you have on your site plus the server operating system. It is recommended that you apply all security patches even for third-party software.
The patches are usually emailed to you by the vendors. However, if your site is hosted through managed hosting plans, all updates of the operating system is usually handled by your web hosting provider.