Prevent Malware Hackers – 4 Tips for Protecting Your Website

Multiple racks of servers
Multiple racks of servers (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

American inventor Thomas Edison once said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” While this is a wonderful, positive outlook to have about most things in life, it is a sad fact that hackers often have the same positive attitude. If they can’t hack into a computer, this time, they’re positive that they will eventually find a way that works. And if you aren’t prepared, then your computer might be next!

Basic Safety Precautions

Designing a website can be exciting, whether you are creating something from scratch using HTML or using WordPress plugins to design some kind of preexisting template. Once your hard work is complete and you are ready to publish your content to the internet, the last thing you want is to find out that some hacker used a malware program to infect your site with a virus.

Hackers look for websites that lack the protection offered by complex passwords, insecure coding, and outdated scripts. They replace the code originally put into place by the website owner with different messages or advertisements. These fake bits of code are almost always linked to some kind of a virus.

Don’t Be a Victim

Just because you have a website doesn’t mean you have to be a victim. The primary way you can avoid hackers and having your site infected with malware is to use some type of secure web hosting service that can publish your content to the internet. A lot of people assume this is a hefty expense, but the reality is that you can find cheap reliable web hosting companies that offer quality services and features.

When you use standard security practices with your website in conjunction with the services offered by a web hosting company, then you are only raising the bar on being a safe website owner. Here are some things you can do that will make it more difficult for hackers to infect your site with some kind of a harmful malware program.

  • Change Passwords – You should change your password every month or so. A combination of lower and uppercase letters as well as numbers works better than a simple word by itself. Avoid using common information like your spouse’s, children’s, or pets’ names and your birthday. For example instead of using “sunshine” as your password, which would be easy to guess, you might consider using “5unSh1n3” which is a stronger password overall.
  • Use Different Passwords – Using the same password for every website is a huge no-no. If someone is able to access your computer via the internet, knowing one of your passwords would then give them intimate access to every site you use, which might include ones for your bank or other financial institution, shopping websites, and possibly any sites you use for work.
  • Update Software – This not only means your operating system but also your web browsers. When these programs prompt you that an update is available, then there is a reason why the manufacturer worked to create that update. Always take advantage of updating software so you can enjoy having the latest technology, which almost always carries the best protection against hackers.
  • Run Antivirus Software – Scan on a regular basis, for instance you might scan your computer once per week. Antivirus software will not only locate any type of nefarious files on your computer, but it can also tell you when a site you are visiting has outdated certifications and a risk of infecting your computer with some type of malware program.

Hackers Go After Everyone the Same

Big businesses have the same risk of being hacked as self-employed entrepreneurs, and many may not become aware of the infection until it is too late. In fact, when it comes to security breaches in a corporate setting, 48% of the 583 IT workers surveyed by the Ponemon Institute reported that the primary cause of a malware attacks or hacking attempts was due to downloading software from the internet.

If the IT professionals for major corporations do not know that their company’s site has been hacked, then how is the typical computer user supposed to know for sure what’s going on with their website? The truth is that hackers are very good at what they do as well. If you are a website owner, finding things like backdoor scripts or iFrames in your site’s code can be tricky business.

Before selecting a web services company, be sure you know how often they back up the information that they are publishing to the web for their clients. Ask them where they store the backed up copies of the information. And if you have any other questions, ask if they have any recommendations or testimonials from other clients that you can read to help you make a final decision.

About the Author

Freelancer Mark Harris may only be in his mid-30s but like some of the people at he has found great success in working for multiple industries online. Working online gives him the freedom to work from anywhere that has a WiFi connection, including his home in British Columbia. During his free time, Mark takes part in activities like hiking and kayaking. However his favorite activity is enjoying beaches along Canada’s western coastline with his wife.

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