Security is a major concern for all websites. Even if you are just running a simple blog, it can be vulnerable to hacking attempts and malware. As a blogger, you should be concerned of the security of your personal brand and website, as well as the security of your readers. You could unwittingly spread malware from your blog to readers if you are not considerate of cyber security.
Your blog can be vulnerable to hacking and hijacking if you are not careful. There’s also the risk of someone duplicating your blog’s address to dupe readers into believing that a spam site is the real blog. Ransomware attacks are also a concern. Yes, the web can be a scary place full of cyber criminals. In order to protect your blog from devastating security threats, follow the below tips:
Use a Very Strong Password
It can be annoying to type in a long and complex password every time you log in to your blog. However, this small hassle could save your blog from a career ending hack. You should use a strong password for your blog that a cyber criminal cannot easily guess. So, “myblog123” won’t cut it.
Use a random number and letter generator to get a password. Such passwords are strong because they are impossible to guess. Always combine letters and numbers, and don’t use any words that include personal information, like your name or birthday. Do make sure to change this password at least every three months. A strong password policy is one of the most basic but highly effective defenses against cybercrime.
Here you can see how to start blogging.
Create a New Admin Account
Most CMSs offer admin accounts with the blog. When you are in charge of the blog and it’s finally online, delete the old admin account and create a new one. Generic admin accounts could be vulnerable to hacking attempts. There could be bugs in the code that savvy hackers know about. A new admin account eliminates such threats. So obtain one as soon as the blog is up and running.
Get Malware Scanning Software
Websites can have their own antivirus software. Go the the official page of the CMS you use; it should have a list of compatible and recommended security scanning software for blogs. If none is provided, send in an inquiry and ask. This scanning software routinely checks the source code of your blog for potential malicious code like bugs. If there are any problems, you will be immediately alerted. Don’t forget to set up automatic updates for this software.
Update All Software
Update and upgrade all software related to your blog. This includes the version of the CMS you are using, all plugins or APIs on your blog, your computer’s OS, browser, and just about everything else. Software makers routinely issue updates that sometimes include patches for security vulnerabilities. These are not announced, that’s why it’s important to set up automatic updates. If you are using any outdated programs, upgrade immediately.
Do not allow just about anyone to access important admin privileges for your blog. The recommended method is to keep these privileges just to yourself, or the administrator. If someone else is posting to your site on your behalf, provide access very carefully. It’s never wise to allow full access. If the access is granted temporarily, disable it as soon as the work is done and change your password.
Control User Generated Content
Allowing users to post their own posts, videos, or images is a great way to create engagement. And it’s also a great way to attract malware. If users are allowed to post content, it should be done with proper security protocols in place. Malicious code can be included in images or videos people upload. Be aware of this potential problem, and ask an expert how to allow users to securely submit content if necessary.
Have Control Over Ads
Ads are a very prominent method of distributing malware across the web. So, be careful not to post just about any ad on your site. You should verify where the ads come from. However, sometimes even this is not sufficient. The New York Times, for example, once became the victim of a series of malicious phishing ads that were imitating a well-known national advertiser. Having a virus scan on your blog as mentioned above will help. Also, you can join an ad network with high security standards. Being vigilant will be necessary to protect your blog from malicious ads.
Last but not least, always back up your blog. Make it a habit to back up every week or month. When you have a backup, you can easily restore your site in case there is a security breach.