Website security is a complicated and easy procedure. There are at least 10 basic steps that you can take now to enhance website security before it’s too late. Even in today’s internet world, website owners need to keep personal information safe from prying eyes.
Take all necessary steps to protect yourself from cyberattacks. First, always update your website security software. Most attackers and hackers use outdated or unpatched software which is easy to install and implement. As of the writing of this article, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer is the most targeted browser in the cyber underworld. Always update your security software and put your mind at ease.
As mentioned earlier, cyberattacks are primarily launched from nation states with the main goal of spying on strategic websites. Although cyberattacks are primarily launched from within, they may spread through electronic means such as email. A lot of cyberattempts are executed through phishing scams. For example, if an individual emails a website asking for personal details, the website will ask for these details via email. In most cases, the individual will provide this info to someone in another country, only to be intercepted by a malicious actor who will use the info to launch a cyberattack. If the victim knows what the attacker looks like, he/she can thwart the cyberattempt with a variety of countermeasures.
If your site is used as a vehicle for identity theft, the cyber attackers will exploit this vulnerability by sending out spam, performing man-in-the-middle attacks (or ‘man-in-the-pants’ attacks) and even changing the browser settings. As mentioned above, these tactics work only if the victim is not aware of the attack. In many cases, victims of malware and cybercrimes have been tricked into clicking on advertisement links. This is done by the cyber-criminals by hijacking popular discussion boards or forums, flooding personal pages and sending junk emails.
The next way a cyber criminal uses your site for his/her benefit is to make use of CMS. CMS, a scripting language, is used to capture, store and display information for a website. Some CMS programs are open source, while others are proprietary software. These software applications are programmed to allow users to gain access to the contents of a site without changing the default settings.
Some of the more advanced web applications can pose as legitimate servers on the Internet, but in reality they’re just working on a sub-server. When a site user clicks on one of these web applications, the server executes scripts that steal information. Often times, this information is used for identity theft. On rare occasions, the attacker has managed to get control of the administrative functions of the server. In this case, he/she has the ability to change various default settings, which means that even the most well-designed CMS applications are rendered useless.
Lastly, there’s another serious application security risk, which is using https instead of http. Many websites that are using https as the default web application protocol do so because it provides them with better cross-site compatibility. Unfortunately, hackers know this and they use https as a means to penetrate your application security. As a result, they can hijack you entire website and use it for their own ends (hijacking sales figures, redirecting to other dangerous websites, etc).
As a result, it is absolutely essential that every time you design your web application, you ensure that the application security is taken care of. Using a secure API is the first step towards securing your web application. Using https instead of http is also recommended. However, regardless of what type of API you are using, you must make sure that the application security is maintained. Webmasters around the world rely on API’s to create their websites, and without proper protection, those web applications could be rendered useless.