The internet has become an integral part of our lives. We use it for everything from banking and shopping to communicating with friends and family. It’s no wonder, then, that so many people have taken their businesses online. But as more and more people move their businesses to the web, the risk of cybercrime increases and the security awareness tips in this article become more critical.
Cybercriminals are always looking for new ways to exploit vulnerabilities and steal sensitive information. If you have an online business, it’s important to be aware of the latest security threats and take steps to protect your site.
Here are eighteen online business security awareness tips to help you make your site more secure:
1. Use Strong Passwords
One of the simplest and most effective ways to improve your online security is to use strong passwords. A strong password should be at least eight characters long and include a mix of upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols.
2. Use Two-factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication (2FA) is an additional layer of security that requires users to provide two forms of identification when logging into an account. This could include a password and a code generated by an authentication app or sent to your mobile phone.
3. Keep Your Software up to Date
One of the most important online business security awareness tips is to keep your software up to date. Cybercriminals are constantly finding new ways to exploit vulnerabilities in software, so it’s important to install updates as soon as they are available.
4. Use a Security Plugin
If you’re using WordPress for your website, some great security plugins are available that can help protect your site. WP Security Scan is one of the most popular security plugins and is available for free.
5. Don’t Use The Same Password for Multiple Accounts
If a cybercriminal manages to obtain your password, they will try to use it to access your other accounts. To protect your online accounts, it’s important to use different passwords for each one.
6. Use a Secure Connection
Whenever you enter sensitive information on a website, make sure that the connection is secure. You can tell if a connection is secure if the URL starts with https:// and there is a padlock icon next to it.
7. Don’t Click on Links in Emails
If you receive an email from an unknown sender or with a suspicious subject line, don’t click on any links in the email. Cybercriminals often use phishing emails to try and trick people into clicking on malicious links.
8. Be Careful What you Download
Another important online business security awareness tip is to be careful what you download. Only download files from trusted sources and make sure to scan them for viruses before opening them.
9. Don’t Store Sensitive Information on Your Website
If you have any sensitive information, such as credit card numbers, stored on your website, it’s important to ensure that it is properly encrypted. It would be best to consider using a secure payment gateway such as PayPal or Stripe.
10. Back up Your Website Regularly
If your website is hacked, it’s important to have a backup so that you can restore it to its original state. You should back up your website at least once a week.
11. Monitor Your Website for Changes
If you notice any unusual activity on your websites, such as new files or changes to existing files, it could signify that your site has been hacked. Therefore, it’s important to monitor your website regularly and check for any changes.
12. Use a Firewall
A firewall is a piece of software that helps to protect your website from attacks. It can block incoming traffic from known malicious IP addresses and can also help to prevent sensitive information from being leaked.
13. Scan Your Website for Malware
If you suspect that your website has been hacked, it’s important to scan it for malware as soon as possible. There are some great free malware scanners available, such as Sucuri SiteCheck.
14. Delete any Unused Accounts
If you have any unused accounts on your website, it’s important to delete them. Unused accounts can provide a back door for hackers to access your site.
15. Keep an Eye on Your Website’s Traffic
If you notice a sudden drop in traffic, it could be a sign that your website has been hacked and is being redirected to another site. Therefore, it’s important to keep an eye on your website’s traffic and look for any unusual activity.
16. Review Your Website’s Access Logs
Your website’s access logs can be a great way to detect suspicious activity. If you notice any strange IP addresses or activity from known malicious countries, further investigation is important.
17. Protect Your WordPress Login Page
If you’re using WordPress, some great plugins are available that can help protect your login page. One of the most popular is Login Lockdown, which allows you to limit the number of failed login attempts.
18. Be Careful What you Post on Social Media
If you use social media, it’s important to be careful about what you post. Don’t post any sensitive information or anything that could be used to hack into your accounts.
Other FAQs About Online Business Security Awareness
Here are some other frequently asked questions about online business security awareness:
Q: What is the best way to protect my website from hackers?
A: The best way to protect your website from hackers is to keep your software up to date, use a strong password, and use a security plugin.
Q: Is it really necessary to have a backup of my website?
A: Yes, it’s important to have a backup of your website if it gets hacked or you make a mistake and delete something important.
Q: How often should I scan my website for malware?
A: If you suspect that your website has been hacked, it’s important to scan it for malware as soon as possible. There are some great free malware scanners available, such as Sucuri SiteCheck.
Q: I’m not very tech-savvy. Is there someone I can talk to about online security for my business?
A: Yes, many companies offer online security services. You can also contact your hosting company or the company that built your website, and they should be able to help you.