Hackers can destroy your website in just a few minutes. By losing your data, you will lose both customer confidence and a good reputation. Luckily, there are several proven tips to protect websites from being hacked.

How to protect websites and servers from being hacked

  1. Always update your software – out-of-date software acts as an open back-door for cybercriminals: it gives them the opportunity to exploit existing well-known vulnerabilities. Update your operating system and other software to remove these potential threats;
  2. Back-up regularly – just in case of the worst scenario, that an eventual hack may really happen, keep a backup copy of your website’s data by performing automatic or manual backups.  This way, even if your website gets hacked, you will be able to restore most or all of it;
  3. Get rid of your “admin” username – once you’ve registered your website, change your “admin” username and the usual site access link by using character combinations that will be familiar to you only. In this case, hackers won’t be able to access your website using the regular “admin” parameters;
  4. Monitor SQL injections and Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) – track your SQL and JavaScript changes through specific parameterized queries in order to identify any unusual code insertions;
  5. Take care of how much information you show through your error messages – be careful about what hints your error messages display. Try to be ambiguous as much as possible;
  6. Use strong passwords and double authentication – complex two-password authentication is getting popular nowadays. Use specific tools for generating and storing passwords for the first authentication. Additionally, use special software to enable the second password authorization (SMS, soft or hard tokens);
  7. Always treat uploaded files with suspicion – don’t give all users the possibility to upload files, because those could contain malicious content. However, if you can’t avoid it, you must limit and constantly monitor the uploading activity;
  8. Secure your connection with SSL certificates – switch to the HTTPS protocol and encrypt your connection by buying an SSL certificate. This extra layer of protection will surely keep hackers far away;
  9. Use a web application firewall – install a special software or hardware to block any hacking attempts and filter unwanted traffic that comes from spammers and malicious bots;
  10. Remove the auto-fill option for forms – remove this last vulnerability in order to protect your laziest customers. Don’t let third parties steal your customers’ data and then use it maliciously against you.

Final thoughts

To conclude, be very careful with your website. If you maintain a daily security prevention routine, your website will allways be up to date. Having backups and remaining safe during any potential cyber threats are the main elements to protect websites.

Remember, a backup a day will keep the hackers away!