The responsibility of securing a website is on the website owner and should be one of the first steps when setting up a website.
The majority of website security breaches are not to steal your data or mess with your website layout, but instead attempts to use your server as an email relay for spam, or to set up a temporary web server, normally to serve files of an illegal nature.
Hackers typically don’t choose which site they’re going to hack and in virtually every case, hackers use scripts that broadly search websites for common vulnerabilities.
Online shops typically deal with secure consumer data, the loss from a breach can be significant. Don’t think you’re safe just because you operate a less complex website. Even for a traditional business site, you may still be using plugins or applications that handle basic user information including login credentials.
1 Use a secure password.
Everyone knows they should use complex passwords, but that doesn’t mean they always do. It is crucial to use strong passwords to your website admin area and also to use good password practices for your users to protect the security of their accounts.
You should start using a password manager app, because it eliminates manual password creation, which can often result in choosing weak passwords or reusing passwords across multiple platforms and accounts, while also storing those passwords in an encrypted vault.
2 Keep all software updated
Manufacturers keep operating systems and software running efficiently with regular updates. It is a dangerous practice to push those updates aside to save time because those updates contain crucial new security patches. You need to install these updates as they are available to keep your entire system secure.
According to Siney Mojica, CEO of TechSavvy, “Many of those updates will include fixes to security lapses, and failure to update promptly will leave your site open to attacks. Hackers scan thousands of sites in hours looking for websites that have vulnerabilities in their software, so you need to stay on top of your game too.”
Keep in mind that this applies to both the server operating system and any software you may be using on your website.
3. Buy and install a certificate SSL
These days an SSL certificate is an essential for any site because it encrypts information passing between your website and your visitors.
HTTPS stand for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure and it is a protocol used to provide security over the Internet and guarantees that nobody else can intercept or change the content they’re seeing .
Because Google prefers to rank more secure websites higher fixing this will give an SEO boost
4. Backups – run them regularly.
Automated and manual data backups are standard for virtually every web hosting company, providing a rolling backup of the current version of the site.
If anything goes wrong, you’ll thank your lucky stars that you have a backup of your website. It’s a simple way to recover from a total disaster in mere seconds. You can ask your hosting provider about this service, it can be done automatically on the servers.
5. Manually accept on-site comments
Fake accounts, boots and even the trolls are ready and waiting with a silly comment or spammy link. It’s annoying, but it can get worse because it can pose a security risk to you and your users. If people can post comments directly to your website, there’s a chance that malicious links might sneak into the comments section.
Fix this by changing your site’s settings so that you need to manually approve comments before they appear on your site and you have the chance to delete any spam. Also, you can choose to use an anti-spam plugin, you can turn off comments on posts after a month and you slant ask visitors to register before they can start commenting.
6. Use a firewall
Firewalls are software designed to monitor and filter activity before it reaches the web server. When configured, a set of rules is created and applied to all incoming and outgoing traffic in order to protect the systems and data. Ask your hosting provider about this. Choosing the right hosting provider offering a robust suite of security features is the best ways to mitigate risk, and protect your website.
7. Check your website for security issues and malware
We recommend scanning your website for security issues and malware using a free scanner like Sucuri, for example. Run it and see if there are any issues. If there are issues, then contact your web host, they should be able to help.
Sometimes if there is an issue or a security issue this will most likely show up in Google Search Console. It is a good practice to take a look there from time to time.
Bonus: Extra tip for WordPress
You can also secure your website on the database level. A WordPress database is made up of rows and columns. These rows, or tables, have different names like wp_users or wp_options. Renaming the wp_ prefix obscures the true table’s name. WordPress still knows where to find them, but hackers don’t.
Remember that a good website security starts with you: choosing a reliable website builder or hosting provider, making sensible choices about how you run your site, and putting in the extra effort to make passwords secure.