How to protect your website or webshop

The latest breach of the American hotel chain Marriott impacted around 5 million people whose personal information was compromised. Unfortunately, these kinds of incidents occur more often than you might think. It’s important to protect your webshop from fraud and hacking. 

Protecting your ecommerce site is essential to building trust for your brand. A breach in security could potentially be costly. Hackers can bring your webshop down and ruin your reputation. It could mean the end of your business. In this post we’ll give you some tips on some basic measures you need to take to protect your webshop.

Use a trusted eCommerce platform

Let’s start with the most fundamental aspect of your webshop – the ecommerce platform. We cannot stress enough how important it is to build your webshop using a reputable ecommerce platform. Established platforms are regularly audited to identify security issues and deploy solutions with regular updates. If you’re looking for a platform to build your webshop, then look no further! WooCommerce is the most popular solution for starting an webshop. They are backed by Sucuri – an industry leader in security. 

Implement a SSL certificate (HTTPS)

A Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate is the standard technology to establish an encrypted link between webserver and browser. It ensures that financial and private personal information remains secure. When a website is secure with a SSL certificate the application protocol will change from HTTP to HTTPS, where the “S” stands for secure. Give your customers peace of mind by acquiring a SSL certificate for your webshop. Internet Security Research Group has created an initiative to grant free certificates through Let’s Encrypt

Regular updates and maintenance

It is crucial to perform regular updates on your website. Unpatched applications are an easy target for hackers and thus vulnerable to attacks. Do regular maintenance on your webshop, conduct updates required by your ecommerce platform and plugins. Some free plugins can contain bugs which allow hackers to wipe out web pages and wreak havoc on your webshop. Make sure you only install plugins from trusted developers. Woosa develops plugins for WooCommerce and conducts regular updates to make sure your webshop is always secure.

Require strong passwords

Weak passwords are liable to be hacked using brute force. An attacker can automate software to try as many combinations as possible until it can gain access to your website/webshop. It’s important to create a secure password to minimize the risk of  A strong password should meet the following criteria:

  • Has 12 characters minimum
  • Includes numbers, symbols, capital and lowercase letters
  • No dictionary words or a combination of them
  • No obvious substitutions (i.e. H0use or P3t)
  • Don’t reuse a password for different account

It’s good practice to change your password every 6 months to prevent data breaches. A strong password must be nearly impossible for somebody else to guess. Following these simple requirements will lower the risk of your password being compromised. 

Use a VPN

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) creates a secure connection by employing sophisticated encryption techniques to protect your privacy. Consider installing a VPN on company devices to secure your webshop when you’re working from a public network to avoid the spread of malware or other kinds of cyber attacks. A VPN acts as a proxy which makes requests on your behalf and makes it impossible for someone to intrude on your online activity. 

Educate customers and employees

Consider establishing strict security protocols to handle customer data. Train your employees to adhere to your business’ policies in order to protect your webshop. Highlight your best practices for data security on your website to assure potential customers they will be protected. Follow these basic guidelines to be sure you’re meeting the minimum requirements to keep your webshop secure and deter attacks from hackers. 

In conclusion, any one of these measures alone cannot guarantee that your webshop remains secure. It’s your responsibility to ensure that you’re taking the necessary precautions to protect your website. These are just some basic guidelines to help you get started. 

Want to make sure your webshop is protected?

Free plugin providers don’t do regular updates which can prove costly if your website stops working during peak sales periods. After all, you get what you pay for… Do you want to avoid the hassle of using subpar plugins? Or would you like to develop a specific plugin to meet your needs? Woosa focuses on making tailored plugins for the ecommerce industry at low investment costs. Reach out to us!