Nowadays, many of the webmasters want to know how to protect your website from hackers and other malicious attacks. After the well-publicized data breaches of last year, many people and businesses are worried about the security of their websites. Whether prompted by concern for personal data, client information, or the well being of your online platform, take some simple steps to secure your website.
How to Protect your Website from Hackers
1. Backup Your Data On and Off-Site
Backing up your website is the simplest way to ensure that if something happens to your site, you will still have your data. By regularly recording and storing all of your site’s key files, you protect yourself from the threat of ransomware and from corrupted files. Backing up also allows you to recover quickly if your server or hard drive fails. Having the files on hand allows you to be up and running again quickly.
2. Use Strong Passwords
In a myth perpetuated by login requirements across the Web, many people assume that because they have a password with a number and exclamation point they are safe. In truth, with dictionary attacks and brute force attacks the new normal, passwords like this are easy to hack. A study by Cylab at Carnegie Mellon suggests that the best passwords are long and do not use patterned combinations (for example, no 123 or abc). Use strong passwords for your login, but also require strong passwords of any customers that login to your site.
3. Update Everything
Keep the software and drivers for your site updated. Updates may feel like unnecessary maintenance, but they often include important patches to combat known viruses or weaknesses. By updating your software, you are closing openings that hackers have found to exploit your website.
4. Hide Admin Directories
Image via Flickr by mikemacmarketing
Admin directories are a lodestone for hackers. If they find the “Admin” folders in your website script, they can concentrate their efforts on hacking those files rather than relying on a generalized attack. By renaming your Admin directories, you make this harder for them to do. You can also disable directory listings or modify the site script to exclude the directory from search engines.
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5. Use a Web Application Firewall
A Web Application Firewall, or WAF, provides a basic but thorough defense of your website. Available both as hardware appliances and as cloud-based services, it is to protect your website from hackers and other unwanted traffic before they reach your server. It may also speed up your website through advanced caching.
6. Use HTTPS
HTTPS, or Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure, is a communication protocol that encrypts information that travels between a website and server. This means that any attempt to access the data in transit will not display the information being sent. In fact, because of the security benefits, Google will now be using the presence of HTTPS in determining search ranking for sites.
Depending on what information hackers target and how much damage is done, rebuilding your website can be a frustrating and expensive project. By taking basic precautions, you reduce the likelihood of an attack. And if you are targeted, the sensitive information on your site is better protected if you have these simple defenses in place.
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