Boost Your SEO and Customer Trust with These Website Security Best Practices
With the rise of e-commerce, it’s easier than ever to start an online business and reach customers all over the world. However, with the convenience of online business also comes the risk of cyber attacks. This is where cybersecurity comes into play. In this article, we will explore the importance of cybersecurity to online businesses and the role that SSL certificates, Shopify security apps, WordPress security plugins, web hosting, domains, employee training, and frequent security updates play in keeping your website safe from cybersecurity threats.
What Is Cybersecurity?
Firstly, let’s define what cybersecurity means. Cybersecurity refers to the protection of internet-connected systems, including hardware, software, and data, from cyber attacks. Cyberattacks can come in many forms, including viruses, malware, phishing, and hacking. These attacks can lead to the theft of sensitive data (like identity left), financial loss, and reputational damage. As an online business owner, it’s essential to take steps to prevent these attacks from happening. Keep in mind that protecting customer data is not only important to e-commerce businesses, but a secure website is equally important to B2C websites that are used to interface with clients.
Here are 7 crucial website security measures every online business must implement:
1. Make Sure You Have SSL Certificates
One of the most important aspects of website security is the use of SSL certificates. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer and is a protocol that encrypts data transmitted between a website and its visitors. This encryption ensures that any sensitive information, such as credit card details or personal information, cannot be intercepted by third parties. SSL certificates also provide your website with the green padlock symbol in the URL bar, which indicates to visitors that your site is secure. This can help build trust with your customers.
SSL certificates are also crucial to search engine optimization (SEO), or making your website easily discoverable online. Google has stated that SSL is a ranking factor for their search algorithm, and they have also started flagging websites that are not secure in their search results. This means that if your website does not have an SSL certificate, it may be ranked lower in search results and potential visitors may be deterred by the “not secure” warning in the URL bar. By prioritizing website security, you can improve your search engine rankings and attract more visitors to your website.
2. Take Your Shopify Security Further
When it comes to setting up an online store, Shopify is a popular e-commerce platform that offers a range of security features. Shopify uses SSL encryption by default on all of its stores and provides PCI compliance, which ensures that your customers’ payment information is secure. However, there is more you can do to ensure a more secure web experience for your customer. Shopify also offers a range of security apps and plugins that can help you further enhance your store’s security, such as fraud prevention and two-factor authentication.
3. Use WordPress Security Plugins
For those who prefer to use WordPress to build their online business, security plugins are essential. WordPress is one of the most popular website platforms in the world, but it’s also one of the most targeted by cybercriminals. WordPress security plugins can help protect your site from attacks by adding features such as malware scanning, login protection, and firewall protection. Some popular WordPress security plugins include Wordfence, Sucuri, and iThemes Security. By using a security plugin, you can help prevent your website from becoming a victim of cyber attacks.
4. Choose the Right Host
Web hosting is another crucial aspect of website security. Your web host is responsible for storing and delivering your website’s content, so it’s important to choose a reputable and secure hosting provider. A good web host should offer features such as SSL encryption, regular backups, and server-level security measures such as firewalls and intrusion detection. Some popular web hosts that offer these features include SiteGround, Bluehost, and WP Engine. By choosing a reliable web host, you can help protect your website from downtime, data loss, security breaches, and cyberattacks.
5. Secure Your Domain (and Similar Domains)
Your domain name also plays a role in website security. A strong domain name can help prevent cybercriminals from using similar domain names to trick your customers into visiting fraudulent websites. For example, if your website is “mybusiness.com,” you may want to consider purchasing similar domain names such as “mybusiness.net” or “mybusiness.org” to prevent others from using them for malicious purposes. By owning multiple domain names, you can help protect your brand and your customers from phishing attacks.
6. Train Your Employees in Website Security
Another important aspect of website security is employee training. Human error is a common cause of security breaches, so it’s essential to educate your employees on the importance of cybersecurity and how to identify potential threats. This may involve providing training on topics such as password security, phishing, and social engineering. Training can be conducted in person by security experts, but there are also several online courses available. This article published by Comparitech lists some of the best online cybersecurity programs and courses available in 2023.
7. Always Be Updating and Checking Your Website’s Security
It’s important to remember that website security is an ongoing process. Cybercriminals are constantly developing new tactics and strategies to attack websites, so it’s essential to stay up-to-date with the latest security trends and best practices. This may involve regularly updating your software and plugins, performing security audits, and monitoring your website for suspicious activity.
Implement These Website Security Measures to Prevent Attacks and Build Trust
In conclusion, cybersecurity is essential for online businesses to protect their customers’ data and maintain a strong brand reputation. SSL certificates, Shopify security apps, WordPress security plugins, trusted web hosting, and the right domains all play a vital role in keeping your website secure. By implementing these security measures, regularly updating your software, training your employees, and staying up-to-date with the latest security trends, you can help prevent cyber attacks and build trust with your customers.
Does your business have a cybersecurity plan?
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If you are looking to build a new website, or are simply interested in ensuring your current website is up-to-date on all of the best security measures, contact us. At Fortress, we have an experienced team of cybersecurity and web development experts that can protect your website and secure your business.