You already know you need a business website — that’s no secret. Now it’s time to make it happen because you’re growing, and your customers demand it. But, before you get started, you’ll want to take the time to get to understand website security.
So, here’s a quick look at how you can ensure your small business website is as safe as possible for those who choose to visit you online.
Don’t DIY It
The first and most obvious piece of advice here is to call in the professionals. A qualified web designer will know all the tricks of the trade to keep your site safe and sound.
Furthermore, you will have a website that is designed with your customers in mind. A professional will ensure your site is easily navigable, visually pleasing, and technically correct.
No matter who designs your website, it’s also not a bad idea to find an ethical hacker to try and break the barriers of web security.
It is especially important if your site is intended to collect data from your customers — for example, an e-commerce shop that processes online payments.
You’ll also want to work closely with your website designer to create a timeline for your ethical hacker to follow.
This cybersecurity professional can simulate a cyber attack to expose site weaknesses, which your web designer can fix before your site goes live.
But, If You Do DIY…
While using a professional web designer is best, if it’s not in your budget, there are still lots of services available that let you publish a website with zero IT experience.
If you must go this route, keep these security tips in mind:
– Use an Established Host. Your hosting service is the company that essentially holds onto your intellectual property and keeps it up online.
Use an established hosting company, which will have security protocols in place that add a layer of protection to your site. CNet lists DreamHost and GoDaddy among some of the best web hosting services.
– Choose a Dynamic Content Management System. A content management system is an online application that lets you release content, such as blog posts and images, to your website without coding.
Instead, use a robust system, such as WordPress, Joomla, or Squarespace, that has a track record of excellent security.
– Enable Access Privilege Levels. If you have many employees that have access to your website, set permissions for each.
Your key management can have unlimited access, while those that don’t need free reign may be limited to specific functions.
– Insist on Optimized Passwords. When the internet was new, your password could be anything simple and easy to remember. Now, cybercriminals have grown used to using keyloggers, social engineering, and other methods to steal your passwords.
So make sure that your customers and employees utilize long passwords and two-factor authentication before accessing your site.
– Include an SSL Certificate. An SSL certificate encrypts sensitive information, such as usernames, credit card numbers, and birthdays.
As a result, it makes it more difficult for hackers to gain access to this data.
– Build Your Cybersecurity Knowledge. If you’re going to handle your cybersecurity, you’d do well to learn everything you can about protecting your business.
Through online programs, you can earn degrees in fields like cybersecurity and information technology while still having the time to run your small business website effectively.
Your website is the digital face of your business. Make sure your website is secure. While your best bet is to use professionals, you can still manage a basic site on your own if you take the time to get to know at least some cybersecurity techniques.
The above tips are just the start — there are still many other ways to keep your site secure. Doing your research can help prevent your company from becoming one of the millions of small businesses targeted by cybercriminals.
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