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While you may feel cyberattacks and major security breaches only affect large businesses and corporations, Inc. magazine refers to studies that show small business websites are targeted just as much as, if not more than, large businesses. The primary reason for this is small businesses are often less likely to have a strong cybersecurity plan in place. This makes it easy for hackers to insert malware, which can spread to visitor’s computers or collect data from the site.
Fortunately, many more small business owners are becoming aware of the dangers the online world poses for their website and taking precautions to protect their information online. A survey from The Manifest in 2020 revealed that 64 percent of small businesses plan to allocate more budget toward data security. If you’re part of this group, Pure Code Digital Agency invites you to explore the following tips and resources to help get started.
As a business owner, your time is often as valuable as your money. It’s likely you don’t have the expertise or hours in a day available to safeguard your website and continue to maintain and update it. To have more time elsewhere and gain confidence in your site’s security, consider hiring a professional who can take care of the specifics for you.
Whether you choose an information security analyst or WordPress development services, entrusting your site to a cybersecurity expert can save you from the expenses of a cyberattack, which results in an average revenue loss of about $1.1 million.
You may have to outsource cybersecurity services, depending on your budget and needs, which requires careful deliberation on your end. As you look at the available workforce, consider the professional’s starting rate, online reputation, packages, and other factors.
Whether you hire a data security specialist or want to take care of your site’s health in house, there are several steps you should take to minimize the risk of an attack:
- Enable a secure HTTPS connection on your website and install an SLL/TLS certificate
- Create strong passwords for your website and store passwords securely
- Install antivirus and antimalware programs on all devices connected to your business
- Limit website access with tailored user controls
- Regularly back up your website in case of an attack
- Scan your websites often and deploy the appropriate network and web application firewalls
- Validate user input to protect against an SQL injection
- Avoid downloading too many plugins or using potentially insecure plugins
- Update software to enhance overall website performance and reduce security vulnerabilities
Even with a good web security plan and team in place, your website isn’t bulletproof. User error, such as a staff member falling for a phishing attempt while on a company device or insecurely sharing passwords, can leave you vulnerable to a malware attack or security breach. Pursuing an advanced online degree, such as a Master’s Degree in Information Systems for yourself, and/or investing in cybersecurity training for all your employees can give you all the necessary knowledge to help reduce the chance of an easily avoidable assault from happening. If going the master’s degree route, be sure that the program you’re interested in holds accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission.
Understanding the risks the internet poses to your website and taking action to prevent a cybersecurity attack does not make you paranoid; it’s a necessity for every small business owner. Your website holds valuable information that may not only affect you and your personal finances but every person on your team and even customers and other people who visit your site. Take the steps to secure your site today.