1 Always Update Website!
Most hacking these days is entirely automated, with bots constantly scanning every site they can looking for exploitation opportunities. It is not good enough to update once a month or even once a week.
2 – Use Strong Passwords For Your Websites
I often need to log in to their site/server using their admin user details. I am frequently disturbed by how insecure their root passwords are. It is a little scary that I have to say this, but admin/admin is not a secure username and password combination.
- COMPLEX: Passwords should be random.
- LONG: Passwords should be 12+ characters long.
- UNIQUE: Do not reuse passwords!
3 – One Site = One Container
Not only can this result in all your sites being hacked at the same time, but it also makes the cleanup process much more time-consuming and difficult. The infected sites can continue to reinfect one another in an endless loop.
4 – Sensible User Access
Once you have separate user accounts for every user, you can keep an eye on user behavior by reviewing logs and knowing the usual behavior (when and where they normally access the website) so you can spot anomalies and confirm with the person that their account hasn’t been compromised.
5 – Change the Default Settings IF You use CMS!
It is usually easiest to change these default details when installing your CMS, but they can be changed later.
7 – Backups
Making backups of your website is very important, but storing these backups on your web server is a major security risk. These backups invariably contain unpatched versions of your CMS and extensions which are publicly available, giving hackers easy access to your server.
8 – Server Configuration Files
You should really get to know your web server configuration files. Apache web servers use the .htaccessfile,
9 – Install SSL
I’m actually of two minds as to whether or not to include this point because there have been so many articles incorrectly stating that installing SSL will solve all your security issues. SSL does nothing to protect your site against any malicious attacks or stop it from distributing malware. SSL encrypts communications between Point A and Point B – the website server and browser. This encryption is important for one specific reason: it prevents anyone from being able to intercept that traffic, known as a Man in the Middle (MITM) attack.
10 – File Permissions
- ‘Read‘ (4): View the file contents.
- ‘Write‘ (2): Change the file contents.
- ‘Execute‘ (1): Run the program file or script.
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