Having a website opens your products, services, or ideas to the world. One of the things you must consider with a website is its security, as thousands of websites suffer cyber-attacks each day. What’s even more interesting is that the website’s size or influence has little to do with how likely it is to suffer an attack.
This article will give you seven practical tools to boost your website’s security and prevent a data breach.
Encryption (SSL Certificate)
Encrypting data transfers between your website and its clients is critical for preventing exposure to hacks. A Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate creates a secure connection between the website and the client’s browser, protecting all shared data.
Even if your website doesn’t handle sensitive data like credit cards or social security numbers, it’s good to have an SSL certificate for the trust it brings to site visitors.
Websites are often targets of DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) or similar attacks. These attacks rely on the website’s weak baseline security, such as a weak password. Setting a complex password for backend access to your site will single-handedly dramatically improve your website’s security.
To quickly create and save complex passwords for your site, try a secure password manager.
Web Application Firewall (WAF)
Not all traffic your website gets is good. A WAF functions like a typical computer firewall. It filters incoming traffic to detect suspicious activity and blocks “bad” traffic based on several pre-determined rules. Advanced WAFs operate behind the scenes, scanning and blocking traffic without requiring any input.
A Web Application Firewall can protect your site from several types of attacks, including:
- Cross-site scripting
- SQL injections, and more.
Website monitoring service (WMS)
Unlike a firewall, which deals with incoming threats, a website monitoring service mainly addresses potential vulnerabilities. Both tools are equally important for overall website security.
The WMS monitors site performance from a technical standpoint. For example, it records page outages or other performance-related issues. It also detects potential security vulnerabilities that expose your site to risk. It’s crucial to know these issues before they get out of control, which is why this tool is so valuable.
Having a strong password is enough to protect against most threats. However, to be completely safe, you should incorporate two-factor authentication (2FA) into your website. 2FA is a simple security solution that requires an extra form of identification before allowing a user to log in.
So, besides the password, there will usually be something else, such as a push notification to a personal device, that validates the user’s identity.
A data breach can still happen no matter how advanced your security is. Whether it’s a hacker or your own doing, you need backups to ensure file availability in the case of lost data. Most hosting services and platforms offer website backups.
It’s usually a straightforward and quick process. You can also set automatic backups to ensure updated versions of your site are saved constantly.
Know your site’s software, such as the content management system and plugins, and patch it regularly. Software updates contain important security fixes that address known vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit. If possible, enable automatic updates to ensure everything is always running on the latest version.
Website security is an ongoing dedication to the integrity and confidentiality of your site data. New threats are appearing seemingly every day, so you must have a set of tools at your disposal to protect your site.
Don’t limit yourself to the tools discussed in this article. Always look for new ways to boost your website’s security.