Website Security

Your online web presence is likely to be a valuable resource and a crucial asset. Your reputation with clients and the search engines like Google can be quickly destroyed from a successful hack attack. It is now a fact of life that whatever you have connected to the web will be under attack from automated systems looking to make use of your resources for their own profit.

People often ask why would anybody want to hack my website? The answer is because your website can be made to work for the hacker by providing a convenient free place to launch anonymous attacks and frauds. The more successful web attacks are truly parasitic. The hacked website continues to function as normal, indeed be can benefit form the extra traffic created by the hacker, but eventually someone will notice and take action. The most common end for a hacked website is to be shut down by Google. They flag the site as having malicious content and warn against visiting. At that point, the legitimate site owner has a dysfunctional website and a bad reputation with Google that can take weeks to recover.

We take great care to ensure any website under our protection remains hack free. Not only do we use the latest and most up to date protection and scanning software but we have a unique tool that will detect any unauthorized changes notifying us to action. We observe that within hours of publishing a new website it is being subjected to hundreds of potential hacks, most are easily prevented but every website is presented with an ever-increasing level of attack. Estimates suggest on any given day well over 40k websites get hacked each day and almost half of all web traffic is from automated bots.

The easiest two basic steps you can take to keep your website safe.

  1. Strong Passwords - According to Gibson Research Organization, “It takes a little over three minutes to crack a lowercase password that is six characters long. Add an uppercase letter, a symbol and a number and that time jumps to thousands of centuries.
  2. Current Software – A recent report from Sucuri detailed that out of date software was the main reason websites were hacked. The recent trend of infections is fueled by inexperienced webmasters failing to maintain their systems or miss configuring them.

Most websites run in the cloud through a hosting company, the better companies offer complimentary security checking on all incoming traffic to your website, blocking all known potential hacking attempts. This is similar to the services offered by CloudFlare or Sucuri. Our partner hosting company SiteGround offer CloudFlare as a complimentary service. But beware companies are aggressively offering to stop your website being hacked through a proxy application firewall at a cost of several hundred dollars a  year. This would be an unnecessary duplicate of the service already provided by the reputable hosting providers.

What to do if you are hacked?

Cleaning out an infection and getting a website operating again can be a challenging process particularly if the site has been un-supported for some time. Not only does the infection and malware have to be identified and removed, but the “door” that enabled the infection to occur must be closed to avoid re-infection.

We offer a package to clean up and restore an infected site. For the one-off fee we will restore your site and help you by requesting Google and others to re-examine your clean site and remove any blocks or warnings.

More in this category: « Optimization Using Google »


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