The Risk Posed By Malware & 5 Steps To Protect Your Website

After recent news events regarding hacking, malware and ransomware I thought it would be prudent to write a short article on making sure your accommodation website is as secure as possible. In this post, I am going to cover the security updates that need to be applied to ensure better security for your website.

But first let’s have a look at what the possible threats are and how they can affect both your computer and your website.

Viruses, Ransomware, Spyware, Trojans & Worms
Each one of these terms refers to a type of “Malware” which is a play on the words malicious and software. The fact that malicious mean harmful clearly nothing good can come out of being infected with any of these.

What Does Malware Do?
There are lots of different types of Malware - each created to do a different job. However, one thing they have in common is that they stop your website from running properly.
Below are a few things malware can do:
1. Steal either your personal or your website visitors’ information.
2. Delete important files
3. Prevent access to your website or files
4. Demand money for access to your website
5. Send spam emails from your website
6. Redirect your website to another website
7. Steal important passwords or card and account details
8. Use your website to infect other devices such as your computer or the computers of those who visit your website for any of the above.
9. Steal important passwords or card and account details
Your website can be harmed very quickly if it is infected by malware. It could crash, reboot or slow down and be flagged by Google as an infected site which will add a bold warning on search results to potential visitors

Don’t Panic Just Yet!
There are many very clever people out there working on ways to counter Malware and fix security breaches. However, in order to provide yourself with the best possible chances of not falling foul of malware and the problems it can cause we strongly recommend you take the following steps.

Ask your website provider (if you are not one of our customers) to do the following:

Please note that before your web designer carries out any of the below it is important to create a back-up of your website. This will allow them to restore your website should it crash.

1. Update WordPress
Always update your WordPress to the latest version. As WordPress evolves security holes are discovered and then fixed making the latest version the most secure and stable.

2. Update Plugins & Themes
For exactly the same reason that you need to update your core WordPress installation, it is important to keep both your site’s Plugins & Themes updated.

3. Delete Unused Plugins & Themes
A bit of website housekeeping can go a long way to keeping your site secure and running smoothly. Unused themes and plugins have generally not been updated for a long time by either yourself or their developer. Therefore, these plugins can sometimes allow direct access to a hacker in the backend of your website.

4. Never Use Admin As A Username
Avoid using “admin” as your username. This is the WordPress default setting… so why make a hackers job easier by giving them 50% of your login!

5. Limit Login Attempts
Technically called a Brute Force Attack, this is where a hacker will use a bot to run through unlimited combinations of usernames & passwords to gain access to your site. We advise limiting the number of logins attempts by IP (address). Doing so will sabotage these kinds of attacks by disabling the hackers ability to login.

Complete peace of mind...

The Ultimate Security Package

If you are one of our customers; we can offer our "Ultimate Security Package" - which contains our improved Site MOT (to upgrade everything...wordpress, plugins & themes to the latest versions) as well as making sure that these are kept up to date throughout the entire year.

In addition, it includes what is considered the best security plugin, to protect your site against malware, brute force attacks and much more. Also includes are daily, weekly and monthly site backups; which are stored in 2 different locations.

This entire package is normally £89.99 + VAT for our 1 year service; but for a LIMITED time only can be purchased for just £49.99+VAT.

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