Being proactive with on-line security has always been important but with website attacks increasing in frequency, taking steps to safeguard your website should no longer be viewed as an ‘optional extra’.
Customers need to feel secure and protected when accessing your website, making purchases or submitting sensitive information on-line and the rise in cyber-crime and on-line theft has resulted in effective internet security becoming more important than it has ever been.
Taking Website Security Seriously
With hackers across the globe employing increasingly advanced techniques designed to compromise websites for their own benefit, doing everything possible to stay one step ahead is now the only sensible option for anyone who takes the security of their website seriously.
Whilst there is a chance that your website may escape the attention of hackers, the indiscriminate nature of many attacks just goes to prove that burying your head in regards to on-line safety is never a sensible option and in the article below we will outline exactly why this is the case.
Is My Website Safe?
Let’s be honest here, if the CIA’s website fell victim to hackers, it is safe to say that no website is 100% safe!
Please click here to see an animated infographic which highlights just how many high profile and respected websites have become victims of hackers over the past few years.
However, as the hackers’ methods of breaking into websites have become more advanced, the good news is that so have the methods of defending these attacks.
Please Note – You can also keep up to date with recorded data breaches via the Comparitech website by clicking here.
Are Some Websites More Vulnerable Than Others?
Some of the most recent statistics available highlight the fact that “WordPress is used by 60.8% of all the websites whose content management system we know. This accounts for 23.5% of all websites.”
For more on this, please visit – http://w3techs.com/technologies/details/cm-wordpress/all/all
For this reason alone, it should come as no surprise that WordPress sites are often targeted by hackers but this does not mean that WordPress websites are the only regular target.
Websites designed using:
- + many others
Being particularly prone to attack, the likelihood that nearly all hosted websites are likely to see some sort of malicious attempt to disrupt their service at some point is very high.
How Do Hackers Attack?
Hackers are skilled at identifying common vulnerabilities related to any platform which can be exploited if software is not kept up to date and now have a number of different methods of attacking websites to gain the information that they require.
Below we have highlighted 3 of the most common:
Threat No. 1 – Phishing
Many people have heard the term ‘phishing’ before but do you know what it actually means though and if so, are you aware of the dangers posed by a phishing scam?
Essentially, the purpose of a phishing attack is to steal a person’s login and password details so that the hacker can take control of the victim’s social network, email and on-line bank accounts.
The image below shows just how much the information which can be taken via a website hack can be worth.
What Makes This Method So Effective?
A recent article highlighted the fact that up to 70% of internet users still use the same password for most, if not all, of their on-line accounts, and this is what makes phishing so effective.
Once the hacker has gained the required login details, they will have the ability to access multiple private accounts and manipulate them for their own good.
The types of information hackers try to obtain via a phishing attack often include credit card numbers, passwords, account numbers and many other types of personal information.
Common Phishing Attacks
A person can attempt to extract valuable information from an unassuming individual in many different ways. A few are listed below:
- Text Messages
- Instant Messages
- Telephone Calls
How Can it Infect My Site?
If hackers can gain access to your website, they can create new areas or pages on your existing site designed to fool users into providing their personal details.
Employing up to date online security measures are essential to ensure that this does not happen.
Threat No. 2 – Malware
Malware (or malicious software to give its full name) is used to attack a person’s computer in order to spread a bug onto other people’s devices and profiles. Malware also has the ability to infect a computer and turn it into a botnet, which means the hacker will gain the ability to control the computer and use it to send malware to others.
Malware can be extremely dangerous due to the fact that it can often be very stealthy, working away in the background without the knowledge of the user for an extended period of time stealing information.
How Can it Infect My Site?
Spyware or other variations of malware is sometimes found embedded in programs supplied officially by companies, e.g., downloadable from websites, that appear useful or attractive, but may have, for example, additional hidden tracking functionality that gathers marketing statistics.
No. 3 – Spamming
Spamming is when a cyber criminal sends emails designed to make a victim spend money on counterfeit or fake goods. Botnets, such as Rustock, send the majority of spam messages, often advertising pharmaceutical products or security software, which people believe they need to solve a security issue which doesn’t actually exist.
Are Phishing & Spamming Linked?
Phishing and spamming are often linked due to the fact that once a phishing attack has been successful, hackers then have the opportunity to use the details obtained to send e-mails which appear to have come from a legitimate company as they look very official.
It is surprisingly easy to fool unsuspecting people into providing credit card numbers, account information etc in this fashion in hopes of rectifying some nonexistent catastrophic problem with an account.
The sense of urgency and impending doom created by the email sender is done intentionally with the hope of coaxing the recipient into taking immediate action by providing all requested information or face dire consequences.
How Can We Help?
Because of the ever changing and evolving method of attacks, vigilance is the primary weapon against all forms of hacking.
To help this guard against attacks on your website, we are offering a service which will regularly update all of the plugins/patches and software versions used within your website to ensure that any vulnerabilities which may be targeted by hackers are removed.
We are also offering an emergency restore and removal service (restore the site back and remove the malware/virus).
For more on these services and how they can help you, please contact us on Tel. No. 01883 372488 or via e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org at we will be happy to run through your options.
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