Starting a blog is so easy today that a child could do it. Maintaining a blog and keeping your information safe and private is a different story. Cyber attacks are real and incredibly threatening, particularly because bloggers are often oblivious to the threat that looms over them. Most bloggers believe themselves to be so inconsequential in the grand scheme of things that they don’t need to take security precautions for their little platform.
This way of thinking is exactly why the statistics regarding cybersecurity in businesses and personal websites are so high. According to research, there were more than 169 million personal records exposed in 2015 from publications and businesses. Despite these hard-hitting statistics, other research shows that only 38% of people with an online platform say they’re prepared with adequate security measures to prevent major attacks.
Don’t let your blog fall by the wayside. Starting a blog is a difficult process. You obviously put a lot of time and effort into the writing, advertising platform, customer following, and product store, and you don’t want that to go to waste.
Use these 10 essential security features to protect all your hard work from malicious attacks.
1. Use strong passwords and change them often.
Do you use the same username and password for your blog as you do for everything else? A shocking amount of people do. Sure, it’s inconvenient to remember different, more complicated passwords for every online application, but doing so significantly reduces your chances of being hacked by brute force attacks.
2. Keep blog access close to home.
Don’t grant admin access to friends and family. If you must let someone else log into your blog, change the password as soon as possible afterward.
3. Regularly check and update plugins and software.
Updates are released for several reasons, but most important is to strengthen the security of your blog. Any plugins and software that run alongside your platform should be updated regularly and checked for glitches and manufacturer recalls.
4. Watch out for malicious advertisements.
This is also known as malvertising, which reportedly increased by more than 200 percent in 2013, and has continued to grow ever since. There are more than 12.4 billion malicious ad impressions on the web, particularly on social media and unsavory websites. Before allowing advertisements on your site, make sure there’s no malicious code included.
5. Use secure hosting.
You can make sure your host is secure by checking the security features. Ideally, your host will provide frequent updates, 24/7 technical support in case of a cyber attack, protection against brute force attacks, and SSL options. Do your research to make sure you’re getting the most out of your hosting site and change hosts if necessary for better protection.
6. Beware of public Wi-Fi and always use a clean PC.
You never know what kind of spam and code you’ll pick up with public Wi-Fi, which is almost always unsecured. Your computer and devices should also be free from viruses and other security complications in order to protect your blog from getting “sick.”
7. Use secure checkout for any product pages.
A lot of blogs sell products in order to maximize their earnings, and if this is you, keep that page protected. Your customers will be entering their credit card information and personal details, and hackers love to peruse unsuspecting small businesses and blogs to steal identities and money.
8. Turn off file editing.
Being able to edit your template’s files is a useful feature, but make sure you disable it in your dashboard as soon as you’re happy with the changes. It keeps hackers from changing the files with malicious code.
9. Don’t allow uploads on your comment feature.
Some blog platforms allow this but make sure it’s disabled. Disgruntled readers or hackers can upload viruses, and both you and your readers can catch the virus if the material is downloaded.
10. Hide your login information.
It’s a lot easier for hackers to access your blog if they already know your username, which can often be found in the author archive page’s permalink. With certain plugins,you can easily remove this to add a little more protection.
Don’t be fooled into thinking your blog is safe because you have a small following. You’re just as vulnerable as anyone else on the web, if not more so because you haven’t yet invested in the security of your blog.
– Jenna Cyprus