Of course all companies should prioritize its website’s security. Whether you’re a startup tech company, a small town e-commerce site, or a major player in the retail business, a violation of your business’ web security has serious, costly consequences. A data breach can result in $4 million from your company’s coffers, on top of the clients and customers you could potentially lose from the incident. This is especially damaging for small and medium businesses that are still establishing their reputations in the industry, not to mention the incredible liability. But more importantly, a security breach can cause significant damage to your clients who have sent and stored private information on the website. Cases of stolen identities and fraud via stolen credit card data will instantly remove any brand loyalty a customer ever had.
Business web security should be among a company’s top priorities. Unfortunately, not all businesses can immediately afford to invest in experienced, qualified cybersecurity personnel and the necessary resources for round the clock security. But there are ways for you to start small and slowly build toward a more secure and safe website.
1. Choose a Credible Host
Every website uses a host that controls how the page appears when it’s live. However, some of these hosts can be compromised if they do not provide secure measures. It’s best to rely on reputable hosts such as WordPress and HubSpot. WordPress includes the WP Engine, a platform that is able to watch out for attacks, nefarious activity, and suspicious traffic. HubSpot has its own dedicated software and platform security.
2. Have Regular Software Updates
It’s important to regularly update your company’s server operating systems, web platforms, and open-source software such as a content management system. Regular updates prevent the risk of hackers entering your different systems, while also enabling smoother operations in the scripts.
3. Require Employees to Have Strong Passwords
Don’t resort to easy to use passwords such as “123456.” Hackers can easily enter a person’s account and download the data inside. Require all your employees to create strong passwords that use special characters, numbers, and letters. The letters should have at least one in capital and others in lower-case. The passwords should also be longer than nine characters. Avoid using terms or names that are easy to figure out, such as your children’s or pet’s names.
4. Add SSL to Your Site
SSL or Secure Sockets Layer maintains the internet connection’s security as a data transfer occurs on the site. An HTTPS and a green secure lock before the URL shows if a site has SSL. It prevents third party users from accessing important information such as credit card numbers and addresses that your customers are likely to submit on a website order form.
5. Monitor All File Changes
Websites that use a CMS may have to add and delete files as it scales up and provides more content and features for consumers. You need to have someone monitor all the file changes that go through the system. Only web developers should be allowed to make file changes. Anything made by outside parties is likely a hacker attack.
6. Manage Multiple User Access
A website is likely to have several users to keep it up and running. However, it’s important that each user is only given access and permissions specific to their role. You must also avoid account sharing between users. If you need to provide a user temporary access to some site features and updates, make sure the permissions are revoked after they have executed their responsibilities.
7. Constantly Test Your Website’s Security
Schedule regular security testing on your website. As the internet grows, so do new attacks and vulnerabilities. You can perform two kinds of tests for your site. The first is vulnerability scanning, a non-intrusive method that sends queries, requests, and traffics to look for vulnerabilities. This automated test must be done at least every quarter. Penetration testing requires a specialist to test the website against the potential hacks of an attacker. Execute this test annually to ensure that your site is protected against comprehensive attacks.
8. Keep Users Informed On the Data You Store
9. Outsource Your Website Security
Small and medium businesses (SMBs) are more vulnerable to a cyberattack. The 2017 State of Cybersecurity reports that 61% of SMBs experienced at least one cyber attack in 12 months. This number increased from the 2016’s report. Unfortunately, SMBs don’t have the big budget and resources to invest in an in house cybersecurity team. Cybersecurity professionals have high salaries that a startup can’t afford right now. Their in house IT department needs to focus on building solutions for business growth and managing the company’s network. But companies can control costs and enjoy high business web security through outsourcing.
Outsourcing website security gives you access to a team of professionals with updated knowledge and technological access to the latest in cybersecurity. These outsourced companies also respond immediately and make sure to monitor the site on a regular basis. You don’t have to worry about hiring new personnel and shelling out the money for cybersecurity training. Instead, you save on what could have been spent on an in house team but don’t scrimp on the high security your website needs.
Outsourcing also keeps your in house team’s focus on business growth. Your IT team, content managers, and e-commerce personnel need not worry about a security breach as they develop the company and its site.
If you’re unsure where to start, check out the reliable and cost-effective data solutions of Infinit-O. We provide proper data management that can be tailored to your specific requirements, such as cybersecurity. You can save up to 40% to 60% in labor and shared infrastructure costs through Infinit-O’s outsourced services. Our dedicated teams are available 24/7 to avoid any potential security breaches. Get in touch with us today to find out how you can build better security for your website.