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What Is Malware? 7 Tips To Protect Your Website From Malware

malware, viruses, website security

Malware is one of the most dangerous threats to your website and can rob you of your critical website information or hamper the functioning of your website!

What exactly is malware?

Malware means malicious software. In simple words, malware is a software that is created with the purpose of causing harm to data or devices. You might be hearing about Trojans, viruses, spyware etc. these are nothing but several types of malware.

What does malware do?

The kind of malware you are dealing with can be ascertained with the way in which it causes the damage. Common types of malware are listed below:

Virus : Viruses are attached to a clean file and upon accessing, it infects the other clean files. Viruses can spread to a great extent and damage the core functionality of a system and it can also delete and corrupt files. Viruses generally appear in an executable file.

Trojans : Trojans disguise themselves as genuine software applications or they may be a part of legitimate software applications that have been tampered. A Trojan functions secretively and creates loops in your website security to let the other form of malware in.

Spyware : Just like the name suggests, spyware is a type of malware that is designed to spy on you. Spyware hides in the background and registers what you are doing online and takes notes about critical information like your passwords, your credit card and debit card numbers, what you search online etc.

Worms : Worms infect the complete network of local or internet based devices with the use of network interfaces. Worms make use of every consecutive infected machine in order to infect more machines.

Ransomware : Ransomware is a rare malware that locks down your computer and threatens to delete everything unless you pay a ransom amount to the creator of the ransomware.

Adware : Adware is not always malicious in nature. It is an aggressive advertising software that affects your website security in order to serve you more ads. There are possibilities that these ads might create a pathway for other malware to damage your data and device. Another adverse effect is the creation of pop-ups ads which is really annoying.

Botnets : Botnets are basically networks of infected computers that are created to function together under the command of an attacker.

Malware is surely a dangerous thing! Here are 7 great tips to protect your website from malware:

Updating Software And CMS

Most of the website owners prefer to work with a content management system like WordPress, Joomla or Drupal etc. A CMS is easy to use and it is an affordable platform for managing your website but if the CMS is not updated in time, it can create a pathway for cyber attacks. New updates are created for content management systems and softwares in order to provide a higher level of security. It is important to make sure that your system, plugins, themes, extensions and CMS version are updated in time as it will strengthen your web security. Popular content management systems like WordPress will notify you when a new update is ready to be implemented or if you schedule automatic updates, it will also update in time by itself.

Website Scanning

Many types of malware and other viruses go unnoticed as the website owners are not aware of it. Malware and viruses can be usually implemented with a single one-line script that is injected in your website code. This malicious code is made to look like the normal website code. For preventing this from happening, it is important to opt for a web hosting platform that offers website scanning. Although this is a paid service, investing in it will safeguard your website from the malicious code and prevent the loss of important data. Website scanning looks for harmful code that does not belong to the code of your website and the malicious code is immediately notified.

Web Application Firewalls

It is not just important to tackle the existing website threats, it is also important to prevent them from coming back. The implementation of web application firewalls (WAF) can help in preventing attackers from even visiting your website. A web application firewall analyses the website traffic on the basis of the source it is coming from. It also analyses the behavior of the website traffic and the type of information requested. Based on these factors and some other important criteria, the firewall allows the legitimate traffic like customers and search engines to access your website and blocks the malicious traffic like hackers and spam bots.

Strong Passwords

You might have heard that it is important to use strong and complicated passwords that are hard to guess, but have you implemented it? If you haven’t, then you must change your passwords right away. An approximate definition of a strong password is a password that comprises of more than eight characters, no dictionary words, a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, use of digits and special characters. A weak password can provide a pathway to the hackers to create a brute-force attack on your website. It is important to create a strong password that cannot be guessed or hacked easily. If you have customers creating accounts on your website, advise them to use strong and complicated passwords as well.

Use of HTTPS

As a customer you might be looking for the green HTTPS bar while shopping online or while making an online payment. The green bar and HTTPS in the URL of the website states that the website is secured with a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). Having an SSL certificate installed on your website is a great way of enhancing security and safeguarding the customer transactions. With the use of a secure sockets layer (SSL), all the online transactions done on your website will be authenticated and therefore, it is difficult for hackers to put any virus or malicious code on your website. Having an SSL certificate installed on your website not just secures your website but also provides you with search engine benefit as Google prefers the website that use SSL certificate.

Conceal Your ‘Admin’ Directories

One of the easiest ways that hackers use to access your website’s data is by accessing the ‘Admin’ directories. Hackers make use of scripts that can scan the directories on your web server to look for names like ‘admin’, ‘loigin’, ‘access’ etc. and after locating such files, hackers start making attempts to comprise the website security. Most of the web hosting platforms provide control over your website directory names and you can rename your admin folders to something else so that they are not easily found by the hackers. Select directory names that would not signify admin directories and notify the other webmasters working on your website about this. This practice will enable you to ward off a major security breach.

Use Of MalwareGone Software

MalwareGone is a great software that detects the malware and provides solutions for getting rid of it. MalwareGone makes use of the actionable intelligence technology for analyzing the collected website information. This method allows the scanner to detect files that act and look like malware. This software is crafted to discover viruses, rootkits, trojans, spyware and other types of malware on a website. MalwareGone detects and removes the constant threats from your operating system by making use of prior backups that are stored in a cloud environment.

The Author

I believe in creating enriching content that is readable and interesting. I work on content related to web hosting, SEO, Ecommerce and social media. Putting things across with the power of words and crafting useful content are my prime objectives.

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