Are you worried about the security of your website? Trust me, you are not alone, most businesses fear hackers, that's why they are consistently improving their cyber security to stay competitive. This allows customers to get a convenient browsing experience without getting worried about their data.
Unfortunately, most businesses fail to take appropriate security measures for their online property. According to a recent Symantec report, over 75% of trustworthy websites have at least one security breach.
It’s not necessary that you host sensitive data on your website or not, the loopholes in your web security can still be capitalized for illegal activities such as server hijacking and spams.
If you have a web app that serves some kind of data collection purpose on the website, you’re dealing with an even higher risk of data breach that costed $450 billion in 2016 alone.
So, the question stays, how secure is your online property? Well, if you’re not sure about it, you can verify it with our 10 online security checkpoints that lay down the security standards for every safe website out there.
Injection takes place when a hacker leaves a bit of code that can infiltrate the security measures and harm the integrity of the website. It usually takes place through SQL (Structured Query Language), OS (Operating System) or LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol).
Such an attack can make the interpreter to hand over critical website access or destroy sensitive data on your database, causing long term harms.
Most websites have an Admin login panel from where the website owner can make changes to the website or access analytics for the website. This login needs authentication and generally, the authentication measures implemented contain certain issues with them.
These issues are weaknesses pertaining in the login panel that may let attackers in without your consent. This can allow them to temporarily access your website without your knowledge and make changes that may pose a direct risk to you. Something that recently happened with Vevo’s YouTube Channel.
The apps on your website need to share some amount of data among themselves and their host servers using APIs. When this communication takes place, the data that is flowing to and from your website can be entrenched and misused.
This is what we call insecure data exposure and it is a rather easy way to get into apps. A huge number of Credit Card frauds, stealing of sensitive information and personally identifiable information is carried out using this method. If end to end encryption is not instated, data exposure attacks are bound to take place and without a website security check, this is hard to treat.
Many times, hackers gain insights of a website’s internal files, structure and critical data using external XML entities. These are basically mismanaged XML codes that act as a weak door to the website.
These result in what we call Distributed Denial of Service Attacks (DDoS) that are a popular for rendering websites useless and cause loss of business to the website owners
After login related issues come access related issues. Access basically defines what all features of the website are available for a logged in user depending upon their role. Sometimes, these role based access specific scripting is not done properly and allows attackers to manipulate website functions and cause destruction.
Depending upon the type of contracted issue, an attacker can make a range of changes on the website such as emptying an online wallet or stealing all the information contained on the website
Misconfiguration is the most common cause that appears in website security check. It can take place at any place such as http headers, cloud storage, etc that cause unexpected vulnerabilities.
Misconfiguration is more of a human error like many that are responsible for security compromise and must be handled with care. All the frameworks being used in a project, certain OSs and patches must be checked, and updated with time to avoid misconfigurations.
Cross Site Scripting or XSS flaws, are the errors contained by newly deployed web pages that haven’t been validated properly. These new web pages can contain backdoors that allow attackers to access previously built webpages and execute wishful commands on them.
This can result in the attacker playing around with your website and script whatever they feel like. The website can be defaced, the web apps can be misused and gain access to your backend while you’re logged in.
Data conversion is always taking place on the web. It's also called serialization and deserialization, which converts data from one form to another. If the data conversion is insecure, the attacker can intervene the process and manipulate it to their advantage.
Once this manipulated data is thrown back to the website, a number of crimes can be initiated such as injection.
Frameworks are like templates that help programmers carry out certain tasks in a predefined way. Most websites use one or another for design and functionality use cases. Sometimes, these frameworks can bring along vulnerabilities of their own that haven’t been tested or explored.
Hence, you perform a website security check before entrusting the entire structure of a website on a single framework, it is advisable that it is tested for various vulnerabilities and it is regularly updated for avoiding data breaches.
Logging is an essential tool that can make or break the web security. Most of the times, when an attack takes place, if a proper logging and monitoring system is in place, the point of breach is quickly identified and further damage is stopped.
This sadly happens only in a handful of cases which is why bigger attacks take so much time to solve. It is necessary that a logger is used for your website that can log all major and minor events taking place on the website for future reference.
Web security is a nasty thing and you never know when you might get hit by a bullet out of the blue. You only get to know when a large amount of blood has flown out of the body. Protect your business with the above listed checklist that will build a solid foundation for your web security from where you can take it further depending upon requirement.
Chhavi is the Founder and Partner at Dikonia. She is passionate about delivering beyond expectations and crafting rewarding experiences. Her company provides innovative IT solutions including custom SaaS offerings that streamline workflow as well as development and design services in keeping with latest buying and market trends. Chhavi holds a Master of Computer Applications from Punjabi University.