Think your website is secured against hackers, viruses, and other Internet dangers? Think again. White Hat Security reports that 86 percent of websites have at least one major vulnerability, with an average number of 56 vulnerabilities reported on a single website. Whether you want to mitigate the potential damage a hacker could cause to your website, or you need to keep customer data safe, you should take measures to completely secure your website.
Protect Your Workstation
You may have the most secure website in the world, but if your workstation is compromised, all of that work will have been for nothing. Keep your workstation’s anti-virus software and operating system up to date to combat opportunistic hackers from getting sensitive information such as your website login, FTP accounts, or root information. Avoid working on unsecured wireless networks when you’re out and about as well, as it only takes one packet sniffer to ruin your day.
Web Form Audit
A major area of vulnerability, reports Creative Bloq, are the submission forms your website uses. If the form script doesn’t validate data and ensure that only permitted characters are used, a hacker can inject code into your SQL database to gain access, grab data, and perform other functions. Properly built web forms are coded so this data produces an invalid result, and isn’t passed on to the database.
User-created content provides a great boon for specific websites, with the community actively making the site a better place for everyone through their own contributions. However, they can also end up a security nightmare. When you learn more about identity threats, the risk that user-created content opens your site up to is significant. LifeLock reports on the issues faced by Snapchat, with fake accounts attempting to gather personal information from users. Put strong security measures in place that limit the types of files users can upload, screen out bot accounts through captchas, and regularly monitor the content added to your site.
Ask your users to log into your website, enter credit card information, or share personal data for an account. Use data encryption methods to secure these forms and prevent casual packet sniffing and hacking from picking up the data sent through these forms. SSL certificates encrypt the data coming to your website so you’re as secure as possible from your end.
Up to Date Scripts
Few websites these days are static pages coded entirely in HTML. Content management systems run the backend of many sites, giving webmasters an easy way to keep content up to date and manage additions without recoding the entire website. However, these database-based scripts create vulnerabilities for the website and the server. Keep a regular update schedule on all of the scripts used on your website, and stay away from scripts that don’t have active development. Non-updated scripts may have massive security loopholes hackers exploit to gain access to your website.