Websites which are hosted on shared platforms are vulnerable to attacks by intruders such as hackers, malware and viruses.
Here are some of the ways you can protect your site when using shared hosting:
- Make frequent backups
Most web hosting service providers will assure you of frequent backups.
However, don’t leave the work of protecting your web content entirely to them. Take time to make your own backups offsite. There are several file managers out there that you can use to download your web files to an offsite location.
Don’t forget to download any databases which are vital for the running of your site.
- Password protection
Don’t make the mistake of using the same password for all your accounts.
Hackers can wreak havoc on your site if all your FTP accounts and MySQL databases share the same password.
To make your password hard to figure out, make sure it consists of symbols, numbers and letters. Avoid using common words or phrases which can be cracked easily.
Finally, remember to change your passwords as frequently as possible.
- Keep the site clean
Any applications such as FTP accounts and email accounts which are not being used ought to be eliminated from the server.
Make sure you also remove all the unnecessary files. Too many files and applications slow down the process of backing up.
In addition, you need to get rid of scripts which are not necessary on your site. Outdated scripts can make it easier for hackers to access your site.
- File permissions
Some parts of your site should only be accessible to authorized individuals. Take time to properly set your permissions for read-only files.
Avoid setting all your files in the same way since this will only make it easy for hackers to access your files.
- Application updates
Sites that run on outdated software are vulnerable to many security risks. Therefore, make sure you subscribe to receive updates about the software or applications you are running on your site.
Anytime a new update is released, upgrade your system immediately to ensure that you are up to date. This will keep your site safe from any potential security threats.
- Protect your computer
An unprotected computer is vulnerable to viruses and malware which can access your web files and corrupt your FTP programs. Therefore, keeping your computer safe from hackers, malware, viruses and spyware is vital.
Take time to install trusted antivirus software which is able to detect any unwanted visitors on your computer. You can also keep your machine safe from intruders by disconnecting the internet when not in use.
Photo Credit: tiffa130
- Keep sensitive data offline
Never store confidential information such as your passwords on a computer which is connected to the internet since this will make you vulnerable to hackers. Once they find your password, they will be able to access sensitive details such as your banking information.
- CMS installations
Many people build their sites using Content Management Systems (CMS) such as Drupal, WordPress and Joomla. Hackers can access your site easily when they know which version you are using. Therefore, if possible, find a way of concealing your plugins. This way, hackers will have a hard time figuring out which CMS you are using.
- Reliable hosting company
To keep your website safe, make sure you select a web hosting provider committed to the protecting your data. You can learn more about various hosting providers by reading reliable hosting reviews.
Find out if the host you are considering has the capacity to track activity on your site and block hackers before they do any damage.
- Safe mode
In shared hosting, web users access data via PHP scripts. Check if your PHP settings are in order. Turn on the ‘safe mode’ to keep unauthorized users from running scripts.
If you need help with this, ask the web hosting provider for technical support. If you are not on the safe mode, users can execute scripts which will reveal your sensitive website details.
- Install SSL certificate
SSL certificates are very important for sites which are involved in different financial transactions. Make sure you have an SSL certificate installed before asking your customers to submit personal or credit card information. This is the best way of ensuring hackers don’t get access to such sensitive information.
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