No matter the type of website you run, chances are, you take great pride in upholding its presentation and functionality. (Otherwise, you probably wouldn’t own one to begin with, right!)
Running a website, be it a blog/hobby site or for ecommerce (either a full-time or sideline business), can be extremely rewarding. But it does require time, effort and money on your part.
And so, because websites are of great importance to their owners, it’s essential that we all take the right steps toward protecting them. Let’s get stuck in, beginning with defining what we mean by Website Security.
Website Security, You Say?
While the methods and jargon for securing websites can sometimes feel a bit technical – particularly for large companies – website security itself is exactly how it sounds.
It refers to any means of securing your site against a known threat lurking out there on the web. Worried about hackers and cyber criminals? (Who among us, isn’t?) Well, website security literally exists because of them.
To strengthen your website’s defences, you can do things like installing security apps, use strong passwords, and also try to stay up to speed with cybercrime headlines; in doing so, you’ll be educated about how to avoid threats like phishing emails.
What Does Website Security Defend Against?
It’s time for a more thorough look at the 5 main threat types that website security can help to protect your website against. Let’s dive in…
- Viruses/Malware – Anyone who’s kept abreast of cyber-related news over the past few years will be familiar with malicious software like malware and its various strains and forms. Malware can be incredibly hard to detect; sometimes it can sit idly on a system (stealing visitor data and infecting their devices), while others, like ransomware, will make themselves known, encrypting data and holding it to ransom
- DDoS Attacks – An acronym for Distributed Denial of Service, a DDoS attack refers to when a cyber criminal works to overwhelm a website with endless traffic (but not the good kind); the traffic is automated and so heavy that it will prevent real traffic from accessing your site; sometimes the perpetrator demands a ransom to end the attack
- Data Theft/Accidental Loss – Unsecure websites can be extremely attractive targets for cyber criminals on the hunt for sensitive data (such as customer details); and don’t forget that sometimes data loss can occur in non-malicious ways (such as through human error from a site’s admin/developer)
- Vandalism – If a hacker manages to breach your website, what they do depends on the motive behind the attack; one may inject it with malware, one may try to destroy it/cause functionality issues, while another may deface it with indecent images/messages simply because they can
Do I Really Need Website Security, Though?
When it comes to website security, you’d be hard-pushed to find a cyber security expert who didn’t fully support the act of safeguarding websites. It is, of course, your choice whether you implement it. But while you mull it over, it’s also worth considering the following:
- Cyber attacks can be expensive – Even a small business may have to cough up a 5-digit figure to clean up the damage created by hackers; attacks can hurt or ruin a company’s reputation, resulting in reduced sales; furthermore, fines could also be imposed by regulators
- Cyber attacks aren’t always easy to identify – Just because your website has been hacked, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it will become obvious to you right away, meaning untold damages could have been inflicted behind the scenes; security plugins can actively monitor your site for malicious activity/bugs around the clock, doing the work for you
- SMBs are targeted by cyber criminals – While cyber criminals do continue to hunt juggernaut corporations, they also continue to target small-to-medium sized businesses due to the fact that many neglect to employ adequate website security measures
Click Here to learn about the 10 ways to make your website secure.
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