By: Varun Kothari

13 Actionable Website Security Checks

Web Development

We store and access information on various devices and forms such as mobiles, laptops, documents, verbal. We handle various types of valuable information like financial information, customer data, and business data. You may not think your website has anything worth being hacked for, however, websites are compromised all the time. The number of website security breaches not done to mess with your site layout or to steal your business data but instead done to set up a web server to serve files that aren’t of legal nature or to use your server as a mail relay for spam. Once you get infected, it not only disrupts your site but also can ruin your website reputation. Let us learn important website security checks to let your webpage get ranked top and be secured form hackers.

It not only infect know sites, buy most of the attacks are automated that if you get injected, it can ruin your site reputation and disrupt your website.

Website security is like locking your home doors at night. You do it not that you expecting something unfortunate to happen-but you do it as if something did happen, in case it would be disastrous.

Here are top 13 actionable website security checks to keep your site safe online:

 

1- Two Factor Authentication

Actionable website security checks
With internet fraud, security breaches, and digital crime on the rise, many people will be very familiar with the importance of online passwords, logins, and online security. But when asked what is to stop this happening from you? There is only one way to ensure your safety is the use of two-factor -authentication.

What is two-factor authentication? How it works. Two-factor Authentication is a two-step verification that adds an extra layer to your login procedure, making the process of stealing your personal details twice as difficult. The two-factor authenticator requires the only use of two types of credentials to be able to access an account. And the three types are:

  1. Something you know to prove your personal identification like password, pattern or a PIN
  2. The thing you are like a biometric- like your voice print or fingerprint.
  3. Something you have like your phone number, ATM card

2- Cross-Site Scripting

Cross-site stripping also refers to XSS, it is a way an attacker can inject malicious scripts into a web page or legitimate site. Cross-site scripting is amongst the top of web application vulnerabilities, it generates when a web page makes use of unencoded user input in the output it generates.

Modern frameworks do a good job of preventing XSS. means legacy applications are among the one who gets more exposure to the risk. You can alleviate XSS using libraries like OWASP, DOMPurify offer some important instructions on how Cross-site Scripting works

3- SQL Injection

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This is a critical vulnerability affecting database servers.
As your application is in MSSQL, you can try using parameterized queries and stored procedures can reduce the likelihood of attack. Apart from that the all validation should be done at server side before submitting to the database. You can check whether the user has submitted any special characters, reserved words etc.

Sensitive information should be stored in encrypted format.
E.g Name, email, Phone No, password, security pin used for two-factor authentication.

4- Block access to folders directly

You can block direct access to any folder to the user through server settings.

5- Ensure Sitewide SSL

Website security checks
The lock in the browser address bar means the site you’re on is secure, right? What it really means is that you are currently using an SSL connection. However to take full benefit of SSKL and verify all encrypted connections.

Below mentioned are the main reasons you should consider adding sitewide -e-commerce SS certificates to your web page:

It improves website rankings

Every organization that works together online is keen on increasing site rankings. Having sitewide SSL endorsements is one approach to enhance rankings. It advances trust in the site and ponders well the brand as being proactively occupied with customer personality security.

Security

Actionable website security checks
It reduces the chance of a peripheral attack. Having a login page which includes the SSL certificate, the site is open for message impersonation and interception. Both the company and the consumer can be selected and scammed through hacks coming from insecure pages.

It’s cost-effective

SSL certificates are not always inexpensive choices, however, they are cost-effective solutions. By the time, the protection the certification offer can save a thousand, sometimes even dollars, especially when compared to the price of a data breach or potential hack.

The security a site-wide Secure Sockets Layer offers can improve conversion, sales, rates, brand reputation, and consumer confidence. Every company wants to improve their e-commerce website with the help of sitewide SSL certificates to ensure that consumers know they are on a safer website and know that any kind of information transferred between servers is protected. It’s very useful features for the company and consumer peace of mind.

Switching to a site-wide SSL certification require minor alterations to how you form things for your SEO. So, whenever you make minor alterations like this must check your google webmaster tool in order to make sure your web page is still indexing.

6- Enable HTTP Strict Transport Security

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7-First understand what is HTTP Strict Transport security?

If a web page accepts a connection through HTTP as well as redirects to HTTPS. In this case, the user may initially talk to any non-encrypted version of the web page early of being redirected. Strict Transport security which makes sure that browsers only talk with a website over SSL. NON-SSL requests will be changed to SSL requests automatically.

HTTP Strict Transport Security (Linux, Windows) ensures that browsers only communicate with a website over SSL. Non-SSL requests (http://) will be converted to SSL requests (https://) automatically. Failure to utilize this measure can result in a man-in-the-middle attack, where a malicious actor could redirect a web user to a bogus site between the non-SSL and SSL handoff.

At some time you have to change admin folder name to make the procedure login to the administration panel more easy and smooth, and to decrease the chances of being hacked.

8- Admin Folder Name

For some administrative purpose, we use folders and provide access to that link to the users for login. Remember to keep the title name quite difficult like add number or date to the folder name.

9- Excel Download

Any form of data that can be download must be password protected. Enable GZIP compression from the server side to boost the speed. As GZIP compression allows the web server to offer smaller file sizes which load at a faster speed for your site users.

Set up SVN to manage code.

10- Audit maintain

You can add audit details for the transactional changes. for simple audit you put 4 fields e,g created by, created date, updated by, an updated date.
so while adding to created by and date will get added and if someone is updating data, then you can update updated by and date every time where you can at least track the last updated by.
Apart from that for major tables you create a separate table for audit and maintain the history of an update for each record which is a tedious job but required for security.

Security Audit and Malware Check

You can use below sites for security check and malware scan
for malware scanning: https://sitecheck.sucuri.net/

11- Role-based access

In big applications there a lot of functionalities available and not all users required access to all functionality so we have to create the role-based access to users where only those access will be provided to the user.

e.g In e-commerce application for data entry, a guy do not require access for reporting part which can be blocked using role-based access.

12-Updated software

Updating your software is the most popular and the safest ways to protect your web application or website and the users. So, make sure your w WordPress stack including plugins and theme is entirely up to date. Upgrading helps the latest bug-fixed versions of the software.

13- Lack of HTTPS

Traditional HTTP is not hidden and thus not secure. It permits a spammer to perform a man-in-the-middle-attack through cookies, user credentials, and other essential data at risk.

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