Choosing the best, and more importantly the most secure hosting for your website is crucial for your business – and your bottom line.
Poor quality hosting is one of the most common reasons for website downtime, having a negative impact on search engine optimization (SEO), and something that can cripple a business overnight – security and malware attacks.
Malware and other hacking methods are always on the increase. It’s something we need to try and stay one step ahead of, or face the consequences of an unknown attacker taking control of your computer, website, personal information, and more.
Website security is something we take very seriously at Shark Bite SEO. We offer secure website hosting that has layers of sophisticated security that’s smart enough, and strong enough to keep almost all hacking attempts locked out.
If you’d like to know more about our secure hosting and how it can help you and your business, please contact us here and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
If you want to know more about the common types of website hacking methods hackers use, how they are holding businesses to ransom, and about why online security is more important now than ever before, read on.
Common Types of Website Hacking Methods
Malware / Ransomware
Malware is the number one technique hackers use to gain access to other computers or inflict them with viruses. It’s a form of software that is specifically built to infiltrate a computer, or network of computers, and cause some form of damage or disruption – often giving the hacker direct access to the computer.
If you’ve ever seen those spammy pop-ups claiming you’ve won something or that your computer might have a virus and asking you to click somewhere, these were more than likely attempts to gain access to your PC through malware.
In most instances the malware requires you to click somewhere or download some files to gain access to your PC. But sometimes it can get in through your host if they have poor security and affect all the sites on that server.
Ransomware is the name given to malware that’s used to extort money from an individual or business to give them back the use of their computers. Ransomware is on the rise, and there have been some scary high-profile cases very recently as I will explain later in this article.
SQL Injection Attack
SQL is a programming language used to build databases, and most servers have a dedicated area for storing the SQL used to manage the data in a site’s database.
An SQL Injection Attack is a form of hacking that targets this specific programming language and effectively opens a door for hackers to gain wider access to the backend data of a website. Payment information (such as credit card details) and personal information, like names and addresses reside on company databases.
If you’re vulnerable to SQL Injection Attacks due to a lack of secure website hosting, you could compromise your customer’s confidential and financial information.
Denial-of-Service Attack (DoS)
A DoS attack is when a hacker floods a server or network with traffic to cause disruption by overwhelming the server with more traffic than it can handle.
This results in your site becoming either unresponsive, or crashing and going offline. It can make it difficult to open files to try and resolve the problem, and without the proper support from your hosting company and ISP a sustained DoS attack can continue until the hacker is willing to stop.
There have been cases of hackers demanding money to stop a DoS attack, but in most instances DoS attacks are malicious in nature just to cause harm to the victims.
When we talk about cookies in IT terms, we’re referring to small files that living on your computer – not delicious biscuits. You create cookies when you visit websites. They help you out by remembering information you typed in, like login details, theme selections, and other custom functions.
Cookie Theft, also called Sidejacking or Session Hijacking, is when a hacker exploits a computer session to gain access to personal information stored on a users’ computer from their cookies.
Once a hacker has access to your computer via a cookie, they can use scripts to access just about anything you can. Giving them the power to cause some serious damage and compromise all of your personal information.
High-Profile Ransomware Attacks Across the U.S.
The frequency and severity of ransomware attacks are on the increase across the U.S. and the rest of the world. It’s something we all need to be aware of as the intent behind ransomware is to extort money under threat of doing some serious damage to the victim’s computer systems.
The harsh reality of how easy it is for malware to take over a computer system hit The Riviera Beach City Council in Palm Beach, FL a few weeks ago when an employee clicked a link in an email that contained malware (source).
The Council ended up agreeing to pay $600,000 to the hackers to get back control of their systems. They felt like they had no choice as they have a large amount of personal and sensitive data saved in their systems, and the cost of losing the data would exceed the ransom demands.
A similar thing happened in Baltimore in May of this year (source). A hacker targeted the city of Baltimore and officials had to shut down most of their servers, which included the city’s 911, 311, fire department, and emergency medical services systems.
The hacker was demanding 13 Bitcoins in ransom (approximately $80,000), but in this instance the city refused to pay. It’s estimated that the attack is going to cost around $18 million in recovery costs and lost revenue.
While these attacks were well publicized because they were targeting parts of a city’s infrastructure that would have a huge impact on the communities, similar attacks are happening to businesses of all sizes and individuals every day.
What Can You Do to Protect Yourself?
Unless you want to find yourself stuck between paying out a crippling ransom demand or losing all your hard work and data saved online, you need to make sure your online assets are as secure as they can be.
This shouldn’t be something you have to worry about, however. We’re sure you have other, more important things to work on within your business. Which is why we are happy to take the worry off your hands.
At Shark Bite SEO we understand the importance of online security and protection against hackers and other nefarious activities better than anyone, and offer one of the most secure website hosting packages available.
When you opt for web hosting with us, you can sleep easy knowing we encrypt your personal and private information. Basically, we lock your data behind a firewall and other layers of security that will keep hackers at bay.
If you’d like to know more about our web hosting and why we’re confident it’s so secure, or want to find out more about the other digital marketing services we offer, you can contact us here and we will get back to you as soon as possible.