By Tim Priebe
November 30, 2023

Cybersecurity for small business websites

Is your website a fortress or a sitting duck? Learn how to protect your online presence with these insights on website security.

While I’m not an IT expert, I have been working with website security for the past couple of decades. And there are definitely more cyber threats now than there were twenty years ago. If your website is important to you, then the cybersecurity of your website should be important to you.

Here are some important factors in the security of your small business website.

SSL certificates

SSL certificates play a pivotal role in website security. They encrypt the data exchanged between your website and your visitors, safeguarding sensitive information like customer details and payment information.

And as of the last few years, an SSL also boosts your site’s credibility and can positively impact your search engine ranking. Implementing SSL is a straightforward yet effective step toward a secure website, and it should be standard practice now.

Consistent software updates

Your website’s Content Management System (CMS), along with any plugins and themes, must be regularly updated. These updates often include security patches that address vulnerabilities.

Neglecting them is leaving your digital door ajar for cybercriminals. Establish a routine to check for and apply updates, ensuring your website remains fortified against emerging threats.

Robust password policies

Strong, unique passwords for website administration are essential. Simple or reused passwords are easily compromised, leading to unauthorized access and potential data breaches.

Educating your team about the importance of password security is vital in maintaining your website’s integrity. Also, implement and enforce a strong password policy, and consider utilizing a reputable password manager.

If you have one, be sure to contact your IT company for help with a password management system.

Regular website backups

Regular backups are the cornerstone of a robust cybersecurity strategy. In the event of a cyberattack or data loss, a recent backup can be a lifesaver. Ensure your backups are automated, securely stored off-site, and tested regularly to make sure they work. This practice provides peace of mind and a quick recovery path should the worst occur.

Choosing the right hosting provider

The choice of hosting provider significantly impacts your website’s security. While this isn’t an absolute rule, in general, the cheaper your hosting, the less secure it probably is. And if security is a special concern at all, ask your hosting provider if they offer more robust security options for websites that need it.

A reliable hosting service not only enhances your website’s security but also contributes to its overall performance and uptime.

Cybersecurity is ongoing

Cybersecurity is not a one-time setup but an ongoing process. As cyber threats evolve, so should your website’s defenses. If you or your website provider isn’t reviewing and updating your security measures as needed, it’s time to start.

It doesn’t help customers and clients trust you if they go to your website and it’s been hacked. So, the security of your website is definitely important for how your business is perceived.

Need expert assistance?

Are you worried your website isn’t protected? Give your website company a call. If you don’t have a website company you’re happy with, feel free to reach out to me. Websites are completely in my company’s wheelhouse, as web design was the first service we provided, starting way back in 2003.

Regardless, don’t leave your website’s security to chance.

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About Tim Priebe

Tim is a public speaker, author, publisher of Edmond Business, and the owner of Backslash Creative. He helps businesses that are worried they don’t have the expertise or time required to invest in doing their own digital marketing. He helps them plan where and how much to invest and often helps execute the plan.

Tim started the Edmond Business online magazine in May 2020 to fill a need in the community when The Edmond Sun shut down and stopped publishing their monthly magazine, The Business Times.