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How To Improve Your Website Security

John Dion

By John Dion

Month: May 2017

How To Improve Your Website Security

How To Improve Your Website Security

By John Dion

In recent years, building an online presence has been made easy by the many tools available to the public. From Joomla, WordPress, to Drupal content management online has become easier. You can now build a website and keep it running without necessarily spending years in the learning process. Though this is the case, there are many issues that come with a website and one of them is security. There are many website owners who concentrate too much on what the website does and forget about keeping their website safe. It is important that you understand how to improve your website’s security to protect your interests and those of your visitors.

 

The following are some of the things that will help you keep your website secure from people with unlawful intentions.

Frequent Updates

Updates cannot be emphasized enough. The main reason why most websites are compromised is because they still use outdated software that is unsecured. As soon as a new plugin or CMS version is available, you should update your website. Hacking in the modern world is automated. This means bots will be scanning through websites constantly to find loopholes to attack it. Get notification apps that inform you when there are updates and you can be sure that your site will not be vulnerable due to the software in use.

Passwords

Most web owners have passwords that cannot be considered safe. You cannot just have your username as admin and your password as admin. If you have a password appearing on the list of the most common passwords, you can be sure that your website will definitely be hacked. Why then should you expose your website to hackers? It is import to have a password that is not related to anything about you such as birth date or any other personal information. The best way to get passwords that randomly generated because they are difficult for hackers to find out. Make sure you do not use the same password in different sites. If one is cracked, the hacker might try to use the password on other accounts. If you have many accounts, you might be wondering how you will remember all of them. Well, you do not have to because there are password managements systems to help you out on this.

User Access

It is possible that your site has different users logging in to work on the site. The users should have appropriate permission to access different areas. If there is a need, you can give a user access momentarily and then reduce it when they have completed a task. For instance, if you want a blogger to post a guest blog, you can give them access without administrative privileges. You can check logs to view the activities of the user when they are logged in. This will help you monitor any suspicious activities on the site.

Change CMS Settings

As mentioned, most attacks are automated and some depend on the weakness of default settings. Hackers know these settings and will, therefore, create bots that can manipulate your site from this perspective. To be on the safe side, you should change the default settings as soon as you install the content management system. It is easy to change the settings during the installation process though they can be done later.

Backups Are Important

Website security is about ensuring that the content and data is safe from people with unlawful intentions as well as catastrophic events. Such events can take everything with it and this is why backups exist. You might not see the need for backing up everything but when something happens, you will thank yourself for backing your site. The good news is that there are effective backup solutions that webmasters can use. It is important to have website backups but you should not risk it all by storing it on your web server. This is because the backups will contain information that you do not want hackers to get their hands on.

Server Configuration Files

It is important to understand web server configuration files. For instance, Microsoft IIS servers use web.config, Nginx servers use nginx.conf and Apache web servers use .htaccess file. These files are very important and powerful and are often found in the root web directory. These files will allow web owners to execute rules by servers including the directives that will be upgrading your site’s security. Some of the rules that will help in improving your security include preventing directory browsing, preventing image hotlinking and protecting the sensitive files on your site.

Include SSL In your Security Arsenal

Well, there are many posts claiming that SSL installation will solve all your security problems. This is not entirely true because SSL will not prevent malicious attacks, it will only protect communication between the website server and the browser. This makes sure that there is not interception of this traffic which is important. SSL plays an important role in e-commerce sites and any other sites that involve the submission of sensitive information such as bank account details and Personally Identifiable Information. The SSL certificate will protect your visitors’ information and this will in turn protect you from all the legal issues attached to being non-compliant with PCI DSS.

File Permissions

File permissions determine who can do what to a certain file. Each file comes with 3 permissions that are presented by numbers. There is Read (4) which allows viewing of the contents, Write (2) which allows changing of the contents and execute (1) which allows the running of the script or program file. If you want users to have permission for different elements you can just add the numbers. For instance, 6 means that the user can write and execute.

Conclusion

The above steps are some of the most important steps you need to know when improving security on your website. You now have a clue on how to improve your website’s security and this will help you a great deal in saving money and time. Tight security also gives your visitors the confidence they need to freely use your website.

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Biggest Web Design Trends Of 2017

Biggest Web Design Trends Of 2017

By John Dion

There have been predictions of the top web design trends to expect in 2017. While these predictions have been correct, it is important to dig a little deeper to explain what these trends are really about and what you can expect from them. It is important to understand the trends and the tools and resources that will help you maximize their potential as you improve your designing. The following are some of the biggest web design trends of 2017. Clearly, there might be many others that are not here but these have what it takes to be on this list.

Imagery Web Design

Stock photos have always played a major part in the world of digital communication. Whether it is a blog, an e-commerce, or portfolio, stock photos always find their way on the site. The use of images is aimed at engaging users and making it easy for them to understand what the website is trying to communicate. Sites have been using the same old stock photos with people smiling and the usual cheesy images. Well, thanks to the new web design imagery trend, designers can now use more natural looking images. There are communities such as Picjumbo and Unsplash which are contributing a great deal to the use of appealing photos that do not look like the same old stock photos that are all too familiar.

Video Background

A website is a form of storytelling tool and telling a story is more effective when there are motion and visuals involved. The visitor will understand the content better when there are emotions and ideas transferred through motion. We have already seen business starting the use of videos in their websites, this trend is growing bigger in 2017 and there are possibilities of 3D graphics and high definition videos. This will build a real life impression that improves the user’s experience. Statistics are indicating that people are in love with videos and this explains why web designers are leaning on their side. There are over 50 billion video views each month and this is a number too high to ignore.

 

YouTube is continuously growing popular and overtaking conventional TV. This is because it gives people the freedom of choosing what to see when they want to see it. It makes sense to include this popular trend in web design to maximize your website’s potential. This trend has a drawback with is a longer loading time. Speed is essential in websites and when a trend is slowing down the loading time, people will be forced to wait just a little longer for a page to load.

Personal Branding

Whether you pay attention to it or not, personal branding is here with us. How people perceive you and your identity are two different things. The reason why personal branding is in use it to make sure you align your mission and vision such that people perceive you as you want to be perceived rather that leaving people to speculate. Without personal branding, your audience will have different opinions about you and not everyone will think of you as you want to be perceived. This trend gives you the control you need to tell people who you are through your website.

Mobile First Website

If you want to succeed in your industry, you need to pay close attention to statistics especially when it comes to access to the internet. The world has gone digital and this means that more people are finding businesses online. What matters are the devices they are using to find products and services. According to statistics, more people are now accessing sites using mobile phones than those using desktop computers.

 

A website that does not offer a mobile friendly version is a great hindrance to people using mobile devices. Experience is everything when it comes to users and the internet. If a user does not like how the website appears on their small screen, they will find one that looks attractive. It might not be of the same quality like the one they have left but it looks good to them and that is all that matters. For this reason, you should have a mobile first approach to ensure that you do not lock out all the mobile users trying to find your business. 2017 is full of innovations that revolve around mobile friendly sites and designs that cater to mobile device users.

 Modular Design

Modular, also referred to as grid based design might not be all that new but has made it to the list of the biggest web design trends of 2017. This trend started gaining popularity because of its reusable nature and the fact that it is responsive friendly with tiles stack well on different screen. The layouts are flexible and will look clean and presentable on any screen size. Some of the best examples of sites that are successfully using the modular design trend include Instagram and Pinterest.

Single Page Web Design

Web browsing patterns are changing and it seems like scrolling is winning over clicking. The use of mobile devices is on the rise and this is significantly changing the design of websites. With smaller screens and scrolling being an easier option, most uses prefer not to click and wait for a link to open. They’d rather scroll around using their fingers on the touch screens. One page sites present a lot of information on one page. They started getting popular a while ago but they are making much more sense today.

Conclusion

If you have been following the web design scene then you must have had an idea of the biggest web design trends of 2017. This is because some of these trends started gaining traction a few years ago only that they are getting popular now. Web design is a quickly evolving industry and we expect to see new trends that might even get bigger than those in this list. It only makes sense to stay updated to make sure that your website is making the best out of the available technology

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