Running and managing a website is a lot of work, and most people don’t even consider the possibility of being compromised. When they ignore the risk, webmasters are putting themselves at an even greater risk. If you run a personal or business website then it’s vital you take steps to protect your website from hackers. Criminals have many reasons for wanting to gain unauthorized access to your content, and all of them will impact you in a negative way.
The hacker might be interested in performing a prank, or they could try to redirect your traffic to another link. If a business website gets compromised, your customers’ personal data could be exposed, and that would ruin your reputation. The following information will help you keep yourself safe.
1. Stay Updated
One of the ways that hackers gain access to a website is by looking for software vulnerabilities. They will reverse engineer software and scripts to find methods to take control of your content and to view your files. To combat that problem, software developers consistently release updates for their programs, which address known weaknesses.
But some webmasters are still reluctant to update their sites because they don’t want to experience any downtime. When you choose not to install recent updates, you are inviting criminals to exploit you and your users. Ensure that you are always using the latest scripts when your goal is to safeguard your website.
2. Create Strong Passwords
Hackers will sometimes use brute force software to access your administration panel, and they can do anything they want from there. The brute force software works by repeatedly entering different numbers and letters into the username and password fields until it finds the correct combination. You can protect yourself from such attacks by using strong passwords that contain letters, numbers and special characters.
Although it’s still possible for hackers to use brute force software to break into your website, they are not likely to succeed. A complex password can resist a brute force attack for several thousand years before the correct combination is discovered. Unless your website contains extremely sensitive data, the hackers will likely move on to an easier target.
3. Encrypt Your Files
Many people store files on their website as plain text, and that makes it easy for hackers to steal and read the information. The problem becomes that much worse when the data contains the credit card numbers of your customers. You can add an extra layer of safety by encrypting your files so that they become all but impossible to read.
An encryption program works by scrambling a file until it’s unreadable, and only the person with the correct decryption key can reverse the process. If your important files are encrypted, hackers will not be able to see them even if they gain access to your website.
4. Rename Your Directories
When hackers want to take control of your website and to cause damage, they will search for your administration directories. If they can locate them, then the hackers can steal your login details or give themselves access. Many programs are available that will scan websites to find administrative credentials, and you can protect yourself by renaming your directories.
Although this step might seem small, don’t get tempted to overlook it because you must do everything that you can to stay safe. The name that you give your directories is not important as long as you know how to access them when you need to make changes.
If a business website gets compromised by criminals, then the entire business could fail. Whether you run a private blog or corporate site, it’s vital to be proactive when it comes to securing your content if you don’t want to encounter problems. Some people feel as though hackers would not want to target them, but their false sense of security could cause them to lose everything.
Safeguarding yourself does not need to be a hard or time-consuming process, and a little effort can work wonders to prevent a disaster from occurring. You never know when a security breach will take place, so you need to take action while you still have the opportunity.