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How to Secure Your Site – Website Security that Works

How to Secure Your Site – Website Security that Works

A website can be an excellent solution for promoting your products or services. You will reach millions of people worldwide. Therefore, selling online has become one of the most popular ways of getting customers these days.

Security for websites is one of the biggest concerns when developing secure and disaster-proof websites. And that’s why you should use advanced security solutions while designing and coding to secure your site to the maximum.

Users interested in a website’s services are more likely to trust a site that puts cyber security for websites first. Because it lets them know the company cares about their safety and will make the necessary steps to safeguard their information.

Google and Bing also ranks secure websites with higher rankings in search results to provide users with the best experience possible.

How To Make Website Secure - 13 Steps

Protecting a website is a big responsibility. It’s more than just having a pretty design and much content. In this website security guide, we will be covering the thirteen best website security methods for how you can secure your website for your small business.
Web Design Tips and techniques

 1. Start With A Domain Name

Before you begin creating a website, you’ll need to do some research and planning to find the best website security for small businesses. Among these, the most critical and essential part is choosing a domain name and domain registration for your site.
A well-placed website address can make all the difference. In addition, a great domain name gives users a positive reaction off the bat. It also helps improve overall usability and search engine ranking.
Consider the following components for the ideal domain name:

 2. Use An SSL Certificate

Most people are concerned with privacy these days. For example, when shopping online, they want to know that their personal and financial information will be kept safe. However, your website relies on user registrations or transactions. In that case, you can ease the minds of potential visitors to your site by using a secure connection that uses secure socket layer (SSL) encryption.

The most crucial aspect of online security is installing a secure website with an SSL certificate. It is one of the internal website security best practices. Without one, you’re leaving yourself and your customers open to hackers breaking through and stealing their data. Imagine how stressful that would be! On the other hand, installing an SSL certificate secures your site and helps you and your visitors feel at ease.

An SSL certificate is a security feature that ensures encrypted customer communication. SSL technology creates a secure link between your website and browser. This keeps shopping cart information and other financial data in transit from being read or exchanged by third parties.
HTTPS encryption ensures sensitive information (like credit card information) stays secure on your server. Google and Payment Card Industry recommendations state that you should use an SSL for all web traffic because it remains the best practice for e-commerce websites today.

 Extended Validation (EV SSL) Certificate

An extended validation certificate is the toughest one to avail and requires an ethical validation process. However, it is available for businesses, from start-ups to big brands. It can take up to a few days to a few weeks for a company to process an EV SSL certificate.
Therefore, it is recommended that you get an EV SSL certificate if you’re setting up a shopping store or want to convince consumers that your website is trustworthy by showing them your company information to prove domain possession.
Like the organization-validated (OV) SSL certificate, an extended validation (EV) SSL does go through a validation process to be issued. However, this is done either by the organization itself or by a third party.
Each year, website security audits are performed to ensure the results are correct and to let businesses know the authenticity of each issued certificate. The best way for a business to maintain the highest levels of authenticity is to use this certificate.

Organization Validated (OV SSL) Certificate.

The organization-validated certificate is an enhanced validation SSL one-domain certificate. Its security levels are higher than the primary DV type of certificates. This certificate uses domain privacy that shows when a customer clicks on the padlock icon in his browser address bar. They will see the organization’s name, city, state, and country of residence, along with its registration details.
The critical thing to remember is that the certificate can display an organization’s data at the end user’s request if it is registered as a Privacy SaaS provider to protect its records from misuse.

Therefore, a verified business gives a site’s customers a chance to visibly see who is behind the site and trust them more. In addition, such an opportunity allows companies to verify their accounts and secure their information by obtaining this additional layer of security.

Domain Validated (DV SSL) Certificate

A domain validation SSL certificate is a low assurance standard because it’s not expensive, but it’s still officially approved. The DV certificate identifies a particular server as trusted. Then, when a user logs into the website, the browser will display an image indicating that specific information has been encrypted.
Furthermore, after completing this certification procedure, the site administrator must confirm and approve the request via email. This process will involve some manual work to install the SSL certificate.

DV SSL certificates are ideal for businesses that need to establish trust online and acquire a low-cost SSL certificate without submitting official legal documentation.

3. Purchase Website Hosting with Good Tech Support

Update Your Website Hosting

Your web hosting is your business’s doorway to the internet. It’s where your website lives, along with all of its information and provisions to keep it safe. Popular web hosts for businesses include Bluehost, GoDaddy, HostGator, DreamHost, and many more.
When choosing the best web hosting for your business, you need to consider your wants and needs carefully. For example, does your website require SSL? If so, does the company offer SSL?
Also, what kind of host backup options are available from a prospective web host? There are many different backup options, such as a weekly or nightly backup and an offsite or cloud-based backup. Are there any additional costs associated with backing up data on these systems?
When you select a host, make sure they have security features crucial to keeping your information safe.

Significant features include:

DDoS Protection:

In a distributed denial of service attack (DDoS), hackers will overload your site with traffic by attempting to connect to your site. As a result, your website may appear unavailable or not load due to the amount of information being pushed through at once. Needs to be improved in code or hardware can also cause slow loading issues on your site.
So, it’s essential to protect yourself against this kind of attack. In addition, proper website protection is a must to keep your company’s continuity rights.

Web Application Firewall:

A WAF works like a trap that prevents potentially malicious HTTP traffic. WAFs filter and monitor incoming requests and block them once they’re recognized as suspicious or harmful.
They’re instrumental in averting attacks stanching from security defects, including SQL (external website security for small business), an injection, cross-site scripting, and website security misconfigurations.

Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) for Login: 

Putting all your faith in a single password can lead to losing your business’s most sensitive data and information. If you’re looking for an extra layer of protection, try using two-factor authentication to log into accounts that deal directly with privately owned data or financial material and information.

4. Implement the Right Content Management System

A content management system (CMS) helps work on your website and ensures you frequently add new content. The most helpful CMSs are systematically improving their protections, helping to keep the program code protected and running at top speeds.
When building a secure and disaster-proof website, there are many things to think about. Unfortunately, many overlook the complexity of securing their website, which can lead to security breaches – and these kinds of things don’t look good for business.
A CMS is one of the essential elements you can use while building a secure and disaster-proof website. Using one that ties into an up-to-date database will help pick up on any issues and keep your data safe. In addition, they can protect you from vulnerabilities that come up as hacks become more and more common.
How to secure your site with best practises

5. Use CDN

A content delivery network CDN isn’t hard to grasp – it’s a group of servers used together to speed up content delivery on the digital web. A CDN works by keeping copies of your website content available on multiple origin servers to give users what they need based on where they live. These unique systems work together to deliver information in real time.

Whenever you open a website, many elements need to be loaded, like images, JavaScript files, videos for video marketing, and more. In addition, it is essential to remember that most web servers run geographically.

That’s why whenever a user opens a website, the closest web server will deliver the cached content requested by the end user; this speeds up delivery and can improve website performance.
Why use a CDN? This kind of function is very popular with websites due to the many advantages they offer, including:

Faster Page Load Times

Slow websites can be detrimental to conversion rates and search engine rankings. That’s why it is important to always maintain website performance and aim for faster load times than your competitors.
Not only will this make visiting your site a more enjoyable experience, but it can also help you beat the competition and get ahead of them in SERPs.
Using a Content Delivery Network can help speed up your website because you’ll have cached copies of your site closer to the end-user. When users call on these cached files, they can load your website faster and stay on it longer – which is excellent for your business.

Lowering Bandwidth Costs

The bandwidth used to host your online content can be very expensive. Whenever a large file needs to be loaded on a computer, the CDN you use will deliver them. Hence, it can eat up a lot of data, which will drive costs up.
By introducing CDNs into your operations, you could make huge savings. It allows access to central servers that keep copies of web content cached.

Content Availability

Suppose you are utilizing a CDN, and your website has become the target of a DDoS attack. In that case, your system’s resources may be overloaded. A CDN offers protection against this because more than one server can handle the traffic.

Even if all the servers go down due to the data redundancy included, the site stays online, and there should be no downtime.

Stronger Website Security

Remember those botnet attacks and DDoS mentioned above? A CDN can help protect against them with unique security features built into their services, such as application delivery, optimization, and acceleration. Also, a CDN service could improve and strengthen the effectiveness of your security certificates to reduce the risk of an attack.

6. Manage Add-Ons, Apps, Extensions, And Plugins

While add-ons, apps, extensions, and plugins can assist you in ramping up the experience for your visitors, an overabundance of them can open up your website to cyber threats. This may slow down your website, increase the risk of abuse, and ultimately impede the user experience, which should be central to all SEO considerations.
Make sure to examine add-ons, apps, extensions, and plugins’ details, reputation, and revision history just as you’d do with a WordPress theme or any other media or content that’s designed to enhance your website service. Good usability is always paramount.
Your website and its navigation tools need to stay updated and well-maintained as well. You’re automatically more secure with regular development since you have defenses against bugs. However, if they become outdated over time, they could leave your business at risk.
You can also take advantage of security-specific add-ons, apps, extensions, and plugins that limit viruses or any other harmful attacks so that you can be more prepared to protect yourself against any threats out there.

7. Enable Different Access Levels

Different personnel can contribute various skills and abilities to your business endeavor when working online. All the same, multiple levels of management help you supervise worker behavior and safeguard your enterprise from potential corruption that could cause havoc on your website.
For example, setting permissions for specific portions of the website in conjunction with restricting certain actions ensures there are no errors or crashes during site navigation. In addition, separate logins for employees can be a valuable way to proceed with changes and protect against mistakes.
Businesses can hold the maximum privilege status, allowing them sole responsibility for making alterations and publishing new content on the web page to safeguard against debacles happening at any time.

8. Set Up Automatic Backups

Building a secure and disaster-proof website takes effort, time, and patience – but the internet isn’t known for slow processing speeds and unexpected crashes. So, in the event of a sudden or prolonged system failure, your business might lose much of its hard work.
However, with a reliable backup system in place, you can make quick work of restoring your company’s core website materials with little fuss required.
It’s essential to store your data in a secure, trustworthy location like the central server to prevent any security breaches or malicious attacks against your website and its content.
In addition, it is recommended to set up automated backups for your site so that you can rest assured that if anything happens, you’ll have plenty of backups.

Backups provide:

9. Keep Security Subscriptions Updated

One of the most important things for a website owner is regularly evaluating their subscriptions to make sure they’re still operating correctly. This is especially true for sites with recurring payments – such as subscription management services, hosting providers, and security programs.
Suppose you don’t pay attention when your subscriptions are up for renewal; in that case, you might end up not having your external or internal security software checked and going over the number of financial transactions per month, which could cause some severe fissures in your security system if someone finds an exploit.

10. Get Support

Suppose you feel like you need to be more tech-savvy and need to be fully aware of how to secure your website. In that case, it might be time to look for an online expert or company that focuses on keeping company websites safe from cyber threats.
You could learn a lot from people with the right experience or knowledge who can guide you based on their expertise.
It’s not just a great idea because it helps save you time and allows your website to grow and advance more quickly, but also because having safe solutions in place will help make sure no threatening material shows up on your website later on.

Choosing an expert web development agency will help establish the groundwork for future success in building a secure and disaster-proof website. In addition, professionals offer advice and support even regarding highly technical safety features.

11. Organize Your Site To Provide A Great User Experience

Displaying how information is structured and presented has a significant impact on a user’s experience. If something needs to be done correctly, it can confuse users who leave without buying anything.
How your site is structured at first glance will shape or change a potential customer’s first impression of you and your company or business. So, take extra care when setting up your site.

12. SEO-Friendly Website Structure

Google gives every site a budget to determine how many pages will be crawled. So, naturally, big sites need more than smaller ones, and they also depend on the kind of website you have: some websites need more links to objects, and others do not.
The best way to optimize your site’s architecture is using proper SEO design principles: best practices provide you with those principles. Applying them allows you to build a solid foundation for Google bots to crawl each page on your site.

Use An SEO-Friendly URL Structure

According to Google, it is advised that you keep things simple and easy to read whenever you are building a website. This makes the process of website navigation easier for your visitors, which will likely increase conversions because people who visit your site will only have to spend a little bit of time figuring out what they’re trying to find.
Keep these points in mind when designing a secure and safe website (Page or blog post):

These issues make your site’s SEO architecture less efficient than it should be, which can negatively impact your site’s traffic over some time.

Use A Sitemap

One way to point bots to the web pages you’d like them to get involved with is to employ the use of sitemaps. To make it easier for them to get all the content they need, you should create sitemaps and RSS/Atom feeds and point both to the different places you want them to go.
These enable bots to discover all the pages and episodes you want them to aim for, plus the sites’ recent updates.

Consider How Pages Flow To And From Each Other

Pay attention to what text these links are using. These words are essential because they’re the main things bots and people look at when they find other pages on your site. You’ll achieve great rankings with solid anchor text by using backlinks from around the web that match your most critical high-value keyword research.
So, it is vital to utilize specific words in your anchor text. Search engines use anchor text to measure the importance of a link. In addition, where a link occurs on your page can send signals about its context relative to the rest of your content.

Ensure A Secure, User-Friendly Experience

Search engines care about rewarding sites that take care of their users and provide them with an excellent experience. They recognize that mobile-friendliness, security, speed, and straightforward navigation are just some of the essential components of a good website.

13. Test As Much As You Can

While you’re building your website and security measures, you may be aware of many things that could go wrong. Still, there might be portions of your website that require the most attention and may have yet to occur to you.
That’s why it’s essential to walk through each page and process it step-by-step to see whether or not the security measures are adequately protected from attacks.
For example, when you walk through the pages and processes, you can ensure that there won’t be any problems with transferrals of anyone trying to access an HTTP address on your site instead of an HTTPS secure one.
Alternatively, if there were some suspicious ‘glitches’ such as error messages during this process, you would know what needs changing.
Designating a test interval can help you track down any possible security holes in your website. Eager as you may be to launch your site, you must carry out the finishing touches on security equipment and platforms for your site.
There’s nothing wrong with experimenting when it comes to improving your system. The best way to know if something works or not is through trial and error testing.
Take as much time as you need to experiment and test out variations of the new security protocols, then settle on what works best for building a secure and disaster-proof website.

Frequently Asked Questions

The most critical web security requirements are as follows:

  1. Verification: ensures that every person who uses the Web service is who they claim to be. Authentication requires accepting credentials from the company and confirming the credentials with an official.
  2. Sanction: is the process of determining whether it is the case that the provider granted the user access to their Web service. It validates the requestor’s credentials and establishes if the applicant is authorized to perform the web service and execute its functions through the web service.
  3. Data Safety: guarantees that the request for web services and the response has not altered the route. It is a must to ensure the integrity of data and privacy. It’s important to remember that data protection cannot ensure the sender’s identity.
  1. SQL injections attack injections, which allow you to run infected SQL statements. These statements are used to control a database server running behind an application on the web.
  2. Cross-site scripting (also called XSS) is an online security vulnerability that allows an attacker to interfere with user interactions with the application in question.
  3. Session management and broken authentication can allow cybercriminals to steal login information or forge session information such as cookies to gain access.
  4. Insecure direct object references (IDOR) are when an application grants a direct connection to objects through input from the user. Due to the vulnerability in question, hackers can get around authorization and gain access to objects in the system directly, such as databases or files.
  5. Security misconfiguration vulnerabilities arise when an application component is susceptible to attack due to an insecure configuration option or an incorrect configuration. Insecure configuration vulnerabilities can cause the application to be vulnerable to attacks targeting any component of the application stack.
  6. Cross-site request forgery (CSRF) is a type of attack that requires the user to perform unintended actions in a web application.
  1. Domain name
  2. Use an SSL certificate
  3. Purchase website hosting with good tech support
  4. Implement the right content management system
  5. Use CDN
  6. Manage add-ons, apps, extensions, and plugins
  7. Enable different access levels
  8. Set up automatic backups
  9. Keep security subscriptions updated
  10. Get support
  11. Organise your site to provide a great user experience
  12. SEO-friendly website structure
  13. Test as much as you can
The security of websites is crucial to stop hackers and cybercriminals from gaining access to sensitive information. If there are no proactive security strategies, businesses or companies risk spreading and increasing malware attacks on other networks, websites, and other IT infrastructures.
Websites that are not secure are susceptible to attacks, such as cyberattacks and malware. As an example, suppose that your site is the victim of cyberattacks. In this case, it could affect the website’s functionality, block users from accessing it, or expose the personal data of your customers.
HTTPS refers to encrypted HTTP. The difference between the two methods is that HTTPS utilizes TLS (SSL) to secure regular HTTP requests and their responses. In turn, HTTPS is safer than HTTP.

About The Author

Boasting 5 years of dedicated expertise as a WordPress developer, Junaid Khalil specializes in crafting secure and SEO-optimized websites. His proficiency extends to graphic design, ensuring an aesthetically pleasing online presence. Proficient in various CRMs including Zoho, Active Campaign, Go High Level, ClickFunnels, Kajabi, and more, Junaid has successfully collaborated with over 100 clients. Many of these clients are recurring, a testament to his commitment to delivering exceptional results and fostering lasting relationships.

Moreover, Junaid excels in social media management, adeptly navigating platforms to enhance client visibility and engagement. His hosting management skills guarantee seamless website performance, while his proficiency in sales funnel implementation ensures efficient conversion paths for optimal client results. His multifaceted skill set and dedication have consistently earned praise and trust from a diverse array of clients, establishing Junaid as a reliable and results-oriented professional in the field.

M Junaid Kahlil

Senior Marketing Associate
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