It seems that every other day there is a new report of a mass hacking or data breach. Such occurrences are a significant concern for any business that operates online, particularly if they are responsible for the security of customer data.
There are strategies you can use to protect yourself against online criminals and hackers. Many of these strategies relate to what tools and resources you use to set up your website.
Before hiring out a team that provides web development in Melbourne, make sure you have a serious conversation about what steps they will be taking to ensure that your client data and information is kept safe. Continue reading to learn a little more about how to build a secure website.
Choose the right content management system
A website developer will tell you that the first step to building a secure website is choosing the right content management system, or CMS.
A CMS is a type of software that can be used to build websites without the need to code every element from scratch. The most popular CMS platforms, including WordPress, Drupal, and Kentico, come with a range of pre-programmed tools that are designed to protect your website against common threats.
There are many benefits to using a CMS, not least of all the fact that their developers are constantly looking for ways to upgrade security and protect against emerging threats.
Be careful about plugins
A plugin is a type of software that can be added to your CMS platform to increase the functionality of your website. There are many different types of plugins and they can help do everything from running marketing campaigns to gathering user data.
While plugins certainly have their benefits, there can also be downsides to using them. Overloading your site with too many plugins can cause a significant increase in page load speed. They also have the tendency to open up vulnerabilities in your site’s security for hackers to sneak through, so you need to be careful about which you choose to use.
Consider enabling different access levels
If you run a large business, chances are that there will be multiple people who need access to your website at the same time. This can be everyone from the marketing team to your IT professional.
Unfortunately, the more people who have access to your website, the higher the likelihood is of you getting hacked. One way that you can reduce this risk is by enabling different access levels within the backend of your website. By providing separate logins for each employee and restricting certain areas of your website to only necessary personnel, you can save yourself from potentially losing everything.
Use a SSL
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer; an encryption tool that can prevent hackers and online criminals from eavesdropping on transactions initiated on your website.
Encryption involves scrambling data — including personal and financial information — so that it is unreadable to anyone who doesn’t possess the relevant authority. These days, most websites you visit will have what is known as an SSL certificate. You can check whether a website has an SSL certificate by looking for a little padlock to the left of the URL.
By organising for your website to have an SSL certificate, you are signalling to your customers that you take their private information seriously.
On top of that, Google and other search engines show a strong preference for websites that are protected by SSL certification, so using this security tool is an excellent way of improving your SEO rankings.
Practise good password security
We all know how important it is to practise good password security. While we might set strong passwords and use two-factor authentication for our personal accounts, we often forget that the same is required when it comes to protecting work related information.
Ensure that everyone in your team who has access to the backend of your website is using a password that features a combination of uppercase letters, lower case letters, numbers, and special characters. Too many data breaches come from employees neglecting to follow the most basic security protocols.
Test, test, test
Finally, before your website goes live, it’s so important that it is thoroughly tested. At this point in time, you’ll really benefit from having hired a professional team that provides web development services, as they’ll be able to thoroughly probe your site for vulnerabilities and implement appropriate security fixes.
There is nothing more important than customer trust, which is why website security should be one of your top priorities. Building a secure website doesn’t have to be a costly or time-consuming exercise. It’s just about knowing what tools and resources are out there to protect against online threats.