5 Steps to a More Secure Website

Hackers are everywhere, and they’re not just interested in the big government and industrial sites – they can and will come after your site. Don’t make it easy for them to do their dirty work! Whether you’re building your own site or working with a developer, you can begin to increase your  web security by paying attention to these 5 things:

Keep everything up-to-date
Make sure your theme, plug-ins, add-ons and platform (e.g.WordPress, Joomla) are the latest and greatest versions. The folks who build this stuff are constantly refining them to make them more efficient and more secure.

encryption2Use strong passwords – and change them frequently
The three marks of a strong password: Length – 12 or more characters. Complexity – use symbols, punctuation and numbers. Uniqueness – don’t re-use your passwords. Duplicate passwords are a gift to hackers.

Backup your site
Whether you do it yourself or have your web host do it for you, a backup will save you every time – and will get you back in business quickly. There’s no substitute for this one.

Limit login attempts
Find and install a security program that will let you limit login attempts so that more than 4 or 5 wrong login attempts, locks everyone out. Hackers aren’t mindreaders, their favorite technique – Brute-force – depends on persistance. They’ll try an endless stream of possible usernames and passwords, and hope for the best. Login limits shuts them down quickly.

No “Admin” username
You’d be surprised how many website usernames are unchanged from the plain, vanilla “Admin” that came with the install. No wonder it’s the hacker’s first choice (along with a password of 12345678). Change the login name right away and shut the door on the hackers.

There are some great web security programs that you can add to your site. Do the research, find one that you like, and install it. Most will include these ideas along with many more suggestions for building a strong and secure web site.

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