The dynamics of commerce have been forever altered by the sustained importance for businesses to adopt an online presence in addition to, or even in place of, a brick-and-mortar presence. One could even argue that as the COVID-19 pandemic shatters lives, livelihoods, and entire economies, the need for businesses to streamline and maintain their digital presence has only increased in urgency.
Amid social distancing measures and stay-at-home orders, we’re all spending more of our lives online. However, as the situation develops, it really wouldn’t be farfetched to say that in a post-COVID-19 world, the need for robust and reliable cybersecurity is as critical as access to the internet itself.
The global cybersecurity market is currently valued at $173 billion and is expected to touch $270 billion by 2026. As the digital economy flourishes and internet dependency increases, a report by Accenture found that 68 percent of business leaders believed their cybersecurity risks were increasing. These aren’t unfounded concerns; a study by the Clark School at the University of Maryland in 2017 found that a hacking attack occurs every 39 seconds. What makes that statistic particularly telling is that 60 percent of small businesses that fall victim to a cyberattack go out of business within six months.
We’ve prepared this guide with four simple but effective cybersecurity practices every business should adopt to keep cyber threats at bay.
Create A Custom Admin Path
Several hackers often begin their cyberattacks by using automated techniques that target standard configurations on websites before initiating brute force attacks on username/password combinations. Creating a custom Admin Path by altering the standard mywebsite.com/store/admin standard configuration to mywebsite.com/store/kdfidf (or whatever else you want it to be) will make it much harder for hackers to find and attack your admin page.
Update Your Software Regularly
In recent years, both large and small businesses have predominantly been using platforms such as Drupal, OS Commerce, Joomla!, Magento, WordPress, and more. The frameworks of these operating systems tend to make it much easier to build and maintain an effective online business than a bespoke or custom build.
However, when using third-party platforms, it’s crucial that you ensure you’re using the latest and most up-to-date version. Every time a new patch is issued, you need to update your website. Increasing numbers of websites are the victims of cyber-attacks simply because the software hasn’t been updated. Moreover, make sure to use a web application firewall to mitigate risk even when you haven’t rolled out the newest update.
Monitor All File Changes
One of the earliest signs that your website has been compromised is when you notice files being changed, introduced, or deleted. Of course, when managing a website on a daily basis, it can be difficult to detect small file changes without access to technology that would allow you to monitor said changes.
Invest in technology that will help you keep track and monitor all changes on your website. Not doing so will leave your website vulnerable to malicious attacks and hacking that can tarnish the reputation of your business.
Create Strong Passwords
With so many accounts to run on various platforms, it’s simpler to create easy-to-remember passwords. However, we highly recommend that you take the time to create a long, unique, and complex password for your website’s admin interface. If remembering a long and complex password is going to be a problem, you should consider using a password manager such as KeePass, 1Password, or LastPass. Password management will become much easier and more effective when you need to use them on a day-to-day basis.
Get in touch with me for more information about my cybersecurity consulting services.