Site Building Advice 3

How to Safeguard Your Website against Malware

With the Internet, a new, and growing, type of crime came along. Hackers, online criminals, phishing scams and various other types of malware are floating around the Internet aimed to stealing your personal information. Let’s face it, many people out there are trying to make a quick buck – and some do it illegally.

Although, this knowledge isn’t exactly new, what may surprise you is that your website might also be at risk from malware (malicious software) and be blocked from Google and other search engines. After all your efforts in search engine optimization and getting Google, Bing and Yahoo to crawl and categorize your site, the thought of getting blacklisted can be just plain scary.

According to Peter Jensen, CEO of StopTheHacker, Google blacklists roughly 6,000 websites a day. This is because that once your website is infected, so are all of your visitors, including your customers. A blacklisted site not only puts your customers at risk, but also damages your business’s reputation and risks a loss in revenue while you battle out how to remove your site from Google’s blacklist.

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to arm yourself against attacks, keeping your website and customers safe.

Malware is a general term for all malicious software that is aimed to damage and disable computers or systems. This means that there are various types of malware.

It gets on your computer through a number of channels. However, like most scams, malware requires some conscious or unconscious action of its victims. It is designed to deceive users into an action that is seemingly normal or harmless.

Here are a few steps you can take to avoid.

safe laptop
Choose a hosting provider with security protection
Whether you have a website or are considering building one, be sure to ask your hosting provider if security protection is included. If you use Yola for your web hosting, you’re completely safe and protected.

Safeguard your information
If you have a custom domain, consider purchasing private registration so that your information is secure.

Secure your computer and Internet browser
Stay on top of releases for your computer and be sure to update your software. However, be wary of random pop-ups and error messages. Also choose an Internet browser that has added protection against hackers. Firefox and Google Chrome have built in browser protection.

Internet Security
Open emails you trust
Identify which emails are spam and mark them in your email software. If you notice that friends are sharing spam information on their social media accounts, notify them that their account has been jeopardized. If they continue to send or post spam, unfriend or unfollow them.

It’s always good to be in the know. If you have any questions about malware and protecting your website from attacks, ask us.

  • Peter Tatikian

    One of the reasons I recommend Yola to my small business clients is the inherent security that comes with a hosted web site platform. Small business owners don’t have the time or knowledge to patch their CMS platforms or understand how to prevent a SQL injection attack.

    That said, no web site hosting platform is bulletproof. In Yola’s case, what happens if a site owner installs malicious code in the HTML Code or Flash SWF Widgets? What if a bad guy gets hold of someone’s Yola account info? Are there plans for two step authentication like Twitter or WordPress.com now offer? For many small businesses, their online presence is vital; maybe you can address the technical side of Yola’s security features in another blog post?

    • yolainc

      Very good points. I’ll pass your suggestion about a more detailed security features post on to our team Peter!

    • Alyse Speyer

      Very good questions Peter, and thanks for recommending Yola to your small business clients!

      We take security seriously and store passwords in an encrypted format. If we were ever compromised those details would be safe. But you are correct in saying that no website hosting platform is bulletproof. It’s an ever-evolving process as new threats in the space occur. With the Yola platform, users don’t have to worry about patching their CMS or preventing SQL injection attacks.

      Yola reviews all reported sites. If a site owner installs malicious code on his website, we often disable these sites. I would caution users to avoid adding any code from untrusted sources. Our 24/7 support staff can help with that.