Did you know that keeping sites up to date could avoid about 60 percent of security breaches? Hackers are a scary thing, but improving website security can help you lower the chances of something happening to your site.
Whether you’re about to create your first website or your fifth, keep these tips in mind to protect against common cyber threats.
Choose a Secure Web Host
Before you even set up your website, you can work on improving website security with the right host. A web host is a company that has servers that can house your website.
You can pay for a hosting account, and you can create a website and publish it. You don’t need to worry about setting up servers.
However, you can’t always trust web hosts to be secure. Compare a few different hosts and see what they do to alleviate common cyber threats.
Once you find a company with the security features you need, you can set up your website.
Use an SSL Certificate
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, and an SSL certificate shows your site uses encryption. Even if you use the most secure web host, an SSL certificate shows your customers your site is safe to browse.
You can get a certificate for free through most hosts, and that provides basic encryption. It can help protect your business and personal data, so you and your customers can feel safer.
If you sell products or services, you can use SSL to protect customer payment information. You can tell if a site has an SSL certificate if there’s a padlock or if the address starts with https rather than http.
Update Your Website Frequently
Depending on your host of choice, you can use different website builders and content management software. WordPress is a popular option, and there are regular software updates.
As soon as an update is available for your site, you should do it. Many updates help patch security issues, and not updating can leave your site more vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
In the case of WordPress, you may also have updates affecting your plugins, themes and other content. Make sure you take advantage of these when improving website security.
While some updates can be annoying, they’re usually for the best. If you really hate an update, you can consider switching to a new website builder that you do like.
Get Rid of Unused Elements
When you update your website, you should also make sure you still use the various plugins and themes. If not, you can delete the elements to make your site smooth and clean.
You can always reinstall those programs if you need to use them later. But keeping unused elements on your site leaves more chances for common cyber threats.
It gives hackers more options for getting into your site. If you have a digital security team or you do the updates yourself, make sure everything on your site serves a purpose.
Back up Your Website
Before you make changes to your website, you should back up your site. Some website builders offer automatic backups as well, and you can usually download the files to your computer.
A backup is essential in case something goes wrong when you update your site. If an update doesn’t work properly, you can restore the prior version.
You should back up your site whenever you update it. But you may also want to back everything up each week or even each day if you have a lot of website traffic.
You can experiment with how often you should back up your site. Then, you can set a schedule that works for you.
Use Strong Passwords
When setting up users to work on your site, you should use strong passwords. Some hackers will try to get into the backend of your site so they can attack it.
An easy way to do this is to hack in via someone’s login credentials. So make sure your digital security team sets up unique usernames and passwords.
That way, it will be harder for hackers to get into your site. You can also have everyone change their password every few months to further protect business and personal data.
If possible, don’t use a password that you use for other websites. And when creating usernames, avoid simple ones, like admin or administrator.
Set up Antivirus Software
When improving website security, you should also focus on the specific computers you use to work on your site. You can set up antivirus software to protect your various apps and programs.
If you don’t use antivirus software, you may accidentally download a malicious file or program. When that happens, it can affect your entire computer.
Even if you use a Mac, you could still face the consequences of security breaches. Be sure to visit https://setapp.com/how-to/antivirus-tips-for-mac to learn more about antivirus software and Macs.
Once you set up antivirus software, you can use your computer as normal. You can also edit your website and create graphics and other elements offline. Then, you can safely upload those files to the web.
Use Different Servers
Some business owners have multiple websites. You may have one website for your hair salon and another site that sells hair care products.
If that’s the case, you should place each website on different servers. While it may be easier to use the same server, it can be risky.
When someone hacks into one of your websites, they will have an easy time accessing other parts of that server. So that could leave your other sites vulnerable to the hacker.
But if you use separate servers, the other site will be safe even if someone hacks into one of them. While you fix the issue, your other site can remain up, so you can make some money.
Improving Website Security Today
Improving website security can help you gain more sales, and it can build trust for your customers. While you may not be able to avoid security threats entirely, you should do what you can to lower your risk.
From choosing the right hosting company to set up an antivirus program, you can improve your site security fairly easily.
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