Ways to Safeguard Your Website from Cyber Threats

During the fast-paced digital transformation of the global economy, companies engage with their clients via social media platforms or their websites. Users can access all the latest updates, make purchases, reach out to company representatives, and take advantage of special offers by visiting the company’s website.

When the company’s website is unavailable, it results in substantial damage to its reputation and finances. Malicious actors and unfair competitors are well aware of this. Corporate websites are often targeted by hackers seeking ransom payments or acting on behalf of competitors. This is why companies often ask cybersecurity experts how to safeguard websites from hackers.

This material delves into the risks linked to hacked websites and offers solutions for companies to enhance their website security. 

Ways to Safeguard Your Website Against Cyber Attackts. Photo by Dan  Nelson: https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-using-macbook-pro-3949100/

Ways to Safeguard Your Website Against Cyber Attacks: 11 Highly Effective Strategies

Every business understands the severity of cyberattacks as a threat to their operations. Yet numerous companies are unaware of the appropriate security measures to safeguard their websites from hackers. 

1) Set up SSL and Security Plugins

Installing SSL and security plugins is a fundamental security measure to safeguard a website from hacking attempts. Consequently, the data transmitted from your website will be encrypted and only the intended recipients will receive it.

2) Ensure the most up-to-date security software is installed.

It’s crucial for website owners to regularly verify the presence of up-to-date security software. This tip is crucial for website owners who utilize CMS like WordPress and have numerous plugins in use. Updates include unique security patches and features aimed at combating new threats and protecting websites from hackers.

3) Make sure to use a strong password.

Make sure your password is strong. A robust password should be untraceable and include special characters, numbers, and letters. Avoid using typical phrases, terms, or significant dates that are connected to your personal background or field of work.

4) Utilize the https Protocol

HTTPS uses encryption to enhance the security of data transmission. It is crucial for users to be mindful when transmitting sensitive information.

5) Avoid Following Instructions in Questionable Emails

It is important to refrain from following any instructions provided in questionable emails or messages, as they could be part of a phishing scheme. 

6) Regulate the Data Uploaded by Users on the Website

If users need to upload files, make sure to indicate the permitted extensions and maximum file size. Additionally, remember to scan the uploaded files for potential malware. It is advisable to store the uploaded files in a separate location from the room folder to prevent any potential malware from affecting the website’s functionality and data security.

7) Utilize Website Security Tools

Consider utilizing website security tools that can simulate hacker attacks to assess your website’s susceptibility to real-world threats. Using firewalls is a highly effective method to prevent websites from being hacked.

Step 8: Ensure Your Website is Properly Backed Up

Remember to always make a backup of your website. If your website is hacked, you can recover all the data and restore it to normal functioning.

9) Select Reliable Web Hosting Companies

Opt for reliable web hosting providers that consistently monitor logs for access from recognized malicious actors and offer regular backups. If a cyberattack occurs, the service provider will promptly collaborate with you to filter traffic. It could be a good idea to review the past security incidents related to a hosting provider.

10) Utilize Only Necessary Plugins

Utilize well-maintained plugins that are essential for your tasks. If a plugin has not been updated in years or has known security issues, it’s best to steer clear of using it.

11) Ensure Regular Security Testing is Conducted

Consider applying for security testing, like penetration testing conducted by experienced vendors. Security engineers will assess the strength of your web environment against cyberattacks and provide guidance on necessary security enhancements to fix vulnerabilities and avoid future weaknesses. This type of security check involves both manual and systematic evaluation of a system to determine the client’s preparedness to safeguard the website from hacking. 

If a company does not secure its website against hackers and viruses, there is a possibility that clients’ sensitive information could end up on the darknet. It is probable that the company will permanently lose the customers impacted by the breach.

Some companies utilize their websites to store intellectual property like vendor and customer portals, secret company documents, etc. Failing to protect its website from hackers could result in a company facing severe consequences, including legal action from customers and partners, leading to significant damage to its business and reputation. 

After gaining access to the company’s website, hackers can utilize it to launch hacking campaigns against other organizations. Over the past few years, hackers have been utilizing the bandwidth of compromised websites to mine cryptocurrencies. In this scenario, law enforcement agencies could identify your web server as the source of cyberattacks, potentially leading to legal complications and increased costs for your company. 

When a company neglects to put in place sufficient security measures to protect its website from hacking, malicious actors may take advantage of its resources to experiment with their skills and new exploitation techniques in a real-world setting. Here, hackers’ actions can be quite unpredictable, and recovering from the damage they cause to corporate websites may take a while. 

When companies neglect website security, hackers can inject harmful content into web resources to redirect traffic. At times, these activities are carried out by competitors to harm the reputation and finances of their rivals. 

Exploring Website Hacking Techniques Used by Cybercriminals

In 2021, the World Wide Web will consist of over 1.2 billion websites. It’s impossible to analyze the security of all these websites at once, but Google’s Safe Browsing issues over 3 million warnings every day. Research conducted by the security company Sucuri found that approximately 1-2% of websites scanned by the company show signs of compromise that could be considered a cyberattack. When considering this percentage in relation to the total number of websites worldwide, it suggests that around 12 million websites may currently be hacked or infected. Approximately 64% of businesses globally acknowledge experiencing web attacks when discussing companies.  

Cyberattacks by hackers targeting websites typically fall into three main categories: access control, software vulnerabilities, and third-party integrations. Malicious actors are able to access vulnerable login points using a variety of techniques. One common way hackers gain access is through brute-force attacks, where they attempt to guess username and password combinations. In addition, hackers utilize social engineering techniques. Phishing websites are designed to trick users into providing their genuine IDs, usernames, and passwords. Malicious actors aim to gain direct access to specific resources through logins. 

Corporate websites frequently have bugs that may not impact the user experience but, if exploited by hackers, could result in severe consequences. One of the ways hackers can exploit software vulnerabilities to hack a website is through methods like remote code execution, remote/local file inclusion, and SQL injection. There are various interconnected technologies that can be vulnerable on a website, such as the infrastructure or web server. Additionally, third-party extensions like plugins and themes could also be seen as possible entry points for attacks. An important concern with third-party integrations and services is that they are outside the website owner’s control, which can lead to significant security risks if exploited by malicious individuals. 

One common method used by malicious individuals to disrupt specific websites is through DDoS attacks. Attackers use botnets to flood servers with harmful traffic. In addition, hackers can steal user information by freezing user forms through DDoS attacks. 

Cross-site scripting attacks, commonly referred to as XSS attacks, are a significant concern in web security. Those behind these attacks insert harmful code into a legitimate website. Consequently, a malicious actor could potentially gain access to all the information stored on a website. There are two categories of XSS attacks: stored and reflected XSS attacks. If an infected script remains on the server permanently, it is known as a stored XSS attack. Scripts that are sent to web servers in the form of search results or warnings are known as reflected XSS attacks. 

Exploring DNS spoofing involves injecting corrupted data into a DNS resolver’s cache to redirect traffic to a different destination. Due to this, traffic from reputable websites is being redirected to harmful sites with malware. Furthermore, cybercriminals use DNS spoofing to collect data on the redirected traffic. 

At times, hackers may not focus on a specific website but instead target vulnerabilities related to content management systems, plugins, or templates. For instance, they might aim at exploiting weaknesses in certain versions of WordPress or Joomla. 

What are the reasons for companies to secure their websites from hackers?

Preventing hackers and viruses from infiltrating websites can help companies avoid the costly expenses needed to restore their websites post-breach. Cyberattacks on websites can have a significant impact on small and medium-sized businesses, potentially disrupting their operations and hindering their ability to recover. Furthermore, websites that have encountered significant data breaches could potentially be blacklisted by search engines, leading to a significant decrease in new client acquisitions for companies.

Securing websites can lead to improved SEO results for companies. One way companies can safeguard their websites is by implementing DDoS protection measures to stop malicious bots from interfering with legitimate traffic.

One way to safeguard websites is by preventing hacking attempts, which helps ensure the security of users’ sensitive data like names, email addresses, credit card details, dates of birth, and phone numbers. Often, hackers focus on corporate websites to implant malware that will eventually be downloaded onto customers’ devices. Customers tend to lose confidence in a company that fails to securely store their data, leading them to stop applying for its services or buying its products. 

Businesses that neglect website security may attract unfavorable media attention. Industry magazines and newspapers closely follow data breach cases. This media coverage could send a message to other market players and investors that a company that hasn’t protected its website from hackers may not be a trustworthy business partner. Consequently, the company may experience a decrease in growth or be compelled to leave the market.

Securing websites can provide companies with a competitive edge over their rivals. Having a secure website is crucial for maintaining top performance, especially when competitors are dealing with operational challenges caused by cyberattacks. 

Securing websites from hacking allows core employees to focus on business growth and improving the user experience instead of dealing with security problems. Time is a precious corporate resource, and safeguarding websites is a highly effective method for companies to promote efficient time management among their staff. 

Hackers are constantly diversifying the range of tools they utilize for website hacking. That’s why the extent of potential harm from modern cyberattacks on corporate websites can be hard to foresee. Preventing website hacking is crucial for companies to minimize risks. 

Typically, any reputable company prioritizes safeguarding its website from hackers. 

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In conclusion

Website hacking is a significant cybersecurity risk that impacts companies across different sectors. Failing to secure a company’s website from hackers and viruses can result in financial, reputational, and technical repercussions for the business, impacting its long-term competitiveness. There is a diverse range of methods and technologies that hackers use to breach websites and companies focused on safeguarding their online platforms should understand the importance of seeking guidance from security experts to accurately assess their web security.

Companies can follow universal recommendations to reduce the risk of website hacking, along with personalized solutions like TN Computer Medics Certification. This certification offers tailored security solutions based on each client’s specific needs. Typically, businesses aiming to protect their websites from hackers should understand that investing in security is a wise choice that can greatly benefit their reputation, competitiveness, and profitability.

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