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9 Ways to Secure Your Website Right Now!

As your designer, here is how I check if your website is protected on my end, how I can aid you in protecting it on your end, and how I can help you take action to make it even more secure. After all, security is the responsibility of the website host provider and yours!

#1 Install SLL

All Wix websites combine an HTTPS with an SSL certificate. This combination is an essential tool for website security. It adds an extra layer of encryption to keep data safe, which is especially important for eCommerce websites where user data such as names, addresses, and credit card numbers are at risk.

By utilizing HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) and SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificates, websites can ensure that all the data transmitted between the server and the client is encrypted. Clark and Van Oorschot write, "HTTPS and SSL are the most widely accepted standards for website security, as they provide an effective way of ensuring the confidentiality, integrity, and authenticity of data transmitted over the Internet." In addition to providing an effective way of securing data, using HTTPS and SSL certificates also helps protect websites from malicious attacks such as cross-site scripting and SQL injection attacks. Moreover, using HTTPS and SSL certificates can also help improve website search engine rankings, as search engines tend to prioritize websites that use the HTTPS protocol.

When it comes to the security of websites, HTTPS and SSL certificates are often considered to be the best protection measures available. However, while they can provide a certain level of protection, Puangpronpitag and Sriwiboon suggest they can only protect against some risks. For example, they point out that HTTPS and SSL certificates cannot prevent attacks on the server or client-side attacks. Server-side attacks can involve malicious code inserted into the website, or the server itself is compromised. Client-side attacks, meanwhile, involve malicious code being delivered to the user's computer, usually through a malicious link or website. In either case, the user is vulnerable to data theft and other malicious activities, as the certificates do not protect against these attacks. Furthermore, Puangpronpitag and Sriwiboon suggest that HTTPS and SSL certificates cannot protect against the malicious use of cookies, which can be used to track users' activities and compromise their privacy. As such, website owners need to be aware of the potential security risks that HTTPS and SSL certificates cannot protect against and take additional steps to protect their sites from such attacks.

#2 Choose a trusted web host

Only some web hosts are made equally, and a reliable hosting company should actively maintain the security of your website. I use Wix, which has built-in hosting and enterprise-grade security, so that you can trust that.

#3 Use strong passwords

In today's digital age, having a secure and reliable password is essential for maintaining the safety of personal information. Passwords are the gatekeeper of personal data, and the best way to deter hackers is by creating complex, difficult-to-crack passwords that are changed regularly. To ensure that users are creating the most secure passwords possible, I encourage all my clients to take advantage of the benefits of using a password manager to create strong, unique passwords.

Using a Password Manager to create strong passwords is a great way to secure your accounts and information. According to Alshahrani and Alghamdi's article published in the Journal of Information Security in 2022, password managers are "one of the best security tools available to users." Password managers store your passwords in a secure, encrypted database and generate strong passwords. They also protect you from phishing and malicious attacks by warning you about suspicious websites and emails. Also, password managers can make it easier for you to remember your passwords since they can store and autofill them. This is especially beneficial for people who have many accounts or are prone to forgetting passwords. Furthermore, password managers can even help you detect weak passwords by suggesting stronger passwords when needed. Using a password manager effectively creates strong passwords, protects your information, and simplifies your life.

Here are some suggestions for creating unique passwords:

  • Use three unrelated words together (avoid using your name or other identifying phrases).

  • Use a character set that was generated at random.

  • Mix uppercase, lowercase, numerals, and special characters in your message.

  • Use long passwords

  • Use a password manager instead of those renegade sticky notes. You shouldn't need to reuse passwords by keeping track of them with tools like 1password.

#4 Use antivirus software

Antivirus software prevents hackers from accessing your computer and infecting your website with malicious malware. Ensure it is installed on all your devices, especially the ones you use to access the impacted website. There are lots of reputable antivirus software available, including:

  • McAfee

  • Malwarebytes

  • Bitdefender

  • Norton

Do your homework to determine what best suits your needs because most options provide free and paid plans.

#5 Maintain an up-to-date site

One of the most important services I can offer you is maintenance. I'm not talking about updating your website's hours, restaurant menus, newsletters, products, services, and the general idea of modernization of layout, look, and feel.

I'm referring to metrics, communicating with bots, and keeping up with online presence best practices. It's about SEO (search engine optimization) and the health of your website.

What good is a website if its online presence is underperforming? Learn more about Security, Searchability, and User Experience and why those updates to your website are extremely important!

#6 Keep an eye out for suspicious activity

Keep an eye out for any signs of nefarious activities and follow these steps:

  • Whether you know the source of the email or not, avoid clicking on links in emails that seem suspect.

  • When using public or open internet connections, use extra caution.

  • If you're away from your desk in a communal location, log off the website or turn off your device (I disconnect from my secured WiFi in my office).

  • Share private information only when necessary (more on that below)

Ensure that everyone with administrative access to your website, including your coworkers, customers, and other visitors, understands the importance of exercising caution and awareness.

#7 Minimize file uploads

File uploads can be a valuable feature for websites, allowing users to share large files easily or with the site itself. However, there can be significant security risks associated with enabling file uploads. To mitigate this risk, limiting the types of files uploaded to a website and restricting the file size can be beneficial. By limiting the types of files, users are likelier only to upload files necessary for the website and not anything malicious. Additionally, restricting the file size helps prevent users from uploading large amounts of data, which could overload the website's server.

Use a secure file uploads solution, like Filestack or Transloadit., to lessen the risk of assaults if you determine that the ability to upload files is a critical element of the website.

#8 Manually accept website comments

Accept comments manually rather than allowing spam to overtake comment sections on your page.

Website comments are an effective way to engage users and build an online community. However, ensuring your website is protected from spammy comments from fake accounts, bots, and trolls is essential. Not only can this type of unwanted engagement damage your SEO, but it can also lead to malicious links containing viruses. For these reasons, site owners need to take the necessary steps to investigate comments before approving them.

Change the settings on your website so that you must manually approve each remark if you want to prevent these kinds of comments. By doing this, you may examine comments and remove spam before it appears on your website.

#9 Limit user access

95% of cyber attacks result from human error, says Even if the person in question isn't maliciously motivated, they could accidentally click a dubious link, giving an attacker access to your website.

With the increasing prevalence of cyber threats and the potential for malicious actors to gain access to a website's backend systems, businesses need to limit the number of people who have access to their website's backend. Instead, be cautious only to give certified professionals you trust administrative permissions. They should be granted the minimal degree of access necessary for executing the task and receive complete training on handling security concerns.

In Closing

In closing, if I haven't had the "security" talk with you, expect to have one! I will be pushing on this topic yearly at the time of your renewal. I'll review these items, and we can work together to ensure everyone is doing their part!


Amanda Honeywell "A. Honey"

A. Honey Creations, LLC Multimedia Content Creator and Digital Marketing Strategist PO Box 112, Hillsdale, MI 49242

Review me on Google My Business!

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