ECommerce businesses are often held to higher security standards due to the increasing possibilities for the wrong people to gain access to sensitive information both about the company and consumers. Unfortunately, many instances of hacking and malware distribution can be combated with the proper website security tools and updates. It’s upsetting for everyone involved when a company’s server, database or computers are compromised — the consumers rightly feel violated, the company wants to retain consumers while fixing the problem and preventing future attacks, and Internet marketing companies like Online Potential know that these attacks may have been preventable.
Web Security Analysis
Our Orlando-based clients trust us to provide a complete web security analysis so that they can identify weak points and add security where it’s needed. The most basic step to better website security is to educate your company’s employees on the importance of keeping company property free of personal information. Company laptops, computers, and handheld devices should be available only to those employees who need to utilize them for business-related work. By limiting access, you can help prevent the loss or theft of company property. If a company-owned device is stolen, make sure you know how to keep your information, database and servers secure.
The next level of security is ensuring all of your computers use passwords, antivirus software and firewalls. These types of software help keep devices clear of malicious code, like viruses, spyware and malware, as well as stopping unauthorized connections. But all of the risk isn’t placed on the company’s end. It’s possible that websites may have malicious code attached of which the web owners are unaware. So consumers and online shoppers should also utilize antivirus software to keep their information secure.
Firewalls are probably the most well-known form of security on a server. Firewalls create a barrier and monitor incoming and outgoing requests for access. If something is amiss, the firewall should restrict or block access. Advanced server setups often utilize more than one firewall for additional protection.
Secure Socket Layer (SSL)
A Secure Socket Layer, or SSL, is the standard technology for forming a secured link between a browser and a web server. The data that passes between the two ports is encrypted in order for the information to remain private. Websites with SSL connections must have SSL Certification which appears to site visitors as a green lock near the URL or a lock icon at the bottom of a browser. These icons signal that a website is secure and that information processed on that site will be encrypted.
It seems like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people choose generic, simple passwords to protect very important information. You’ll want to make sure that your company’s passwords are not easily guessed, and you also want to include a password policy for your website that consumers can follow. A website password policy might require users to create a password that incorporates letters, numbers and symbols (sometimes called special characters). At Online Potential, we recommend going above and beyond the obvious password tips and using unique passwords for each site or registration. That way, if one password is compromised, access is limited.
As mentioned before, when a company is hacked, its reputation can change overnight. A large company could put millions of consumers at risk through leaked financial information, but small companies can suffer even greater consequences. Although a mere fraction of people might be affected, small companies often can’t overcome the onslaught of negative attention a compromised database or server can attract. Keep your company, and your consumers, secure and protected through Online Potential’s website security analysis.