Posts Tagged ‘Firewall’

How to Increase the Security for Your Website

Friday, November 18th, 2011

The security of your business’s website should be one of your highest priorities. A secure website is one of the best ways that you can establish trust with your customers. The security of your website will directly impact your number of visitors and has the potential to hinder or boost your sales. With the massive number of website intrusions this year alone, hacking has become a major concern for most online shoppers. Whether it is to protect your website or your customers personal or financial data, a secure website is a must have. The following are some tips for creating a strong and secure website environment for your consumers. Securing Your Website

Use a Strong Administrative and Database Password:

Creating a strong administrative and database password will prevent hackers from accessing the admin interface and from taking over your entire online business. If a hacker does gain entry to your website’s administration panel they can pretty much do whatever they please from defacing your website to committing fraud by pretending to be you or your company. To learn more about creating strong passwords visit Elements of a Strong Password.

Secure Admin Email Address

An admin email address is used to login to your web server, CMS, database. It should be kept private and different from the one that you have on your contact page.

Make sure you have Firewalls Implemented:

Configuring a firewall will help prevent unauthorized access to your site and acts as a filter for the information that is sent to and from your website. You should configure your firewall to the highest security preferences so that it will deter hackers from attempting to gain entry to your site.

Update Your Antivirus Program Regularly:

New malicious programs are created and discovered every day so it is important that you not only have Antivirus software but that you also keep it up to date. Antivirus programs scan, track, and remove any problems from your hard drive. Like Antivirus software a spyware program can detect and eliminate any spyware that has made a home on your hard drive.

Read the Latest Information on Tech Blogs:

Reading tech blogs regularly will keep you up to date on the most recent vulnerabilities and will help you stay one step ahead of hackers.

Use robots.txt to Keep Certain Things Hidden from Search Engines:

Add a robots.txt folder for the documents, images, and information that you do not want to be indexed by search engines.

Use a Secured FTP Access and Restrict Root Access

SFTP access prevents others from being able to view what you are uploading or downloading to & from the webserver. Restrict the access to certain non-system folders to prevent FTP uploads by people other than the system administrator.

Check Your Software and Third Party Scripts:

Ensure that any software you use is kept up to date with the latest security fixes. (Blogging software like WordPress, third party scripts, etc.) Also remove any scripts, services, or other software that you are no longer using.

Perform Security Testing:

It is important that once you have the previous security items in place that you perform security testing. Search your website and source code for any security flaws that may allow unauthorized access. You can check your source code for free with Source Code Analysis Tools. Using security plugins like WordPress Security Scan are also a great way to analyze the security of your site.

Keeping your website secure is a never ending job, there will always be new threats and hackers will continue to find new ways to gain unauthorized access. Implementing these suggestions in addition to doing your own research will help you to stay as far ahead of these types of individuals as possible

Thanks for Reading!


Providing Tech Support for Businesses in Maryland

Is Your Information Secure? Taking Preventative Action

Friday, December 17th, 2010

shield10 Tips to Help Keep Your Data Protected

Hey everyone I’m Dustin, welcome back to our blog.

Worried about your information going out across the World Wide Web, continue reading to learn how you can get protected against loss of data, data theft, and data corruption.

  1. Physical Protection: Passwords, firewalls, and virus scanning are great but please don’t forget the basics. Keep your computer physically locked up or only leave it where you know for a fact that it will be safe. Even people you know can access your computer and bring unwanted problems if you give them the chance. Devices like security cables and alarms can be used but are not full proof. Making a note of the computer’s serial number can also be helpful if a theft does occur and needs to be reported. (Computer Protection Devices)
  2. Don’t be naïve not everyone is nice: Don’t give out your personal information to people you don’t know, it’s not a normal for strangers to ask for your address or birthday when you first meet them. Don’t provide too much information to social networking sites.
  3. Use Antivirus and Spyware programs: Using good Antivirus software is not enough anymore. New malicious programs are created and discovered every day so it is important that you not only have Antivirus software but that you keep it up to date as well. Antivirus programs scan, track, and remove any problems from your hard drive. Like Antivirus software a spyware program can detect and eliminate any spyware that has made a home on your hard drive. Many Antivirus programs do have anti-Spyware included, if yours does not, you will need to install a separate program for Spyware. Spyware can often track your web usage, violate your privacy, add unwanted features, and take up your computer usage for its own purpose. (Learn More)
  4. Back up your information: If you don’t already have a back up of your hard drive you should create one. Sooner or later you may encounter a problem that requires a complete hard drive wipe so avoid the hassle of re-building your information and create a backup. There are many programs that will automatically create a back up for you some of them programs include Symantec Backup Exec, Ace Backup, Nero Back it up, Save Me PC, and Evault. Chances are that if you have a security or antivirus program on your computer they will establish a hard drive back up already on a routine basis.
  5. Activate your Firewall: To make certain that your firewall (in Windows) is active access the control panel, go to network and connections, and select firewall settings. Additional programs like Norton Security Suite and McAfee Security provide additional firewall settings. A firewall acts as a barrier between the internet and your computer protecting it from outside access and intrusive problems. Firewalls are essential to controlling the traffic through the various network ports.
  6. Learn and Beware: Educate yourself, don’t be fooled, and take a closer look to see what information is accurate and safe. Avoid pop-ups asking you to install software, only install free software that you are sure about and no is safe. Don’t open attachments without scanning first and don’t open links in your emails that you suspect might be bogus.
  7. Avoid Phishing: Phishing is when emails falsely claim to be an existing organization that you do business with. These emails redirect a user to a website created to look like the legitimate site and then users are asked to update their personal information. Mean while the real company has no need of asking for updated information and you just supplied it all to a criminal. Be cautious of emails expressing urgency and avoid links and submission forms asking for financial information. Sensitive information like this should only be communicated using a secure webpage. (More about protecting yourself against phishing!)
  8. Make sure pages are secure: Whether it is to purchase items, check bank accounts, or to logon to other sensitive information be certain that site is displaying a security icon on the browser window. In addition to the locked icon, an encrypted web site URL will include https instead of the unencrypted http. Depending on the web browser that you are using the icon will be located in various locations. Take the time to familiarize yourself, knowing where yours is located could prove to be very beneficial. If using Internet Explorer the icon is located next to the search dialogue box at the top right and in Mozilla Firefox it is located in the lower left hand page border. Clicking this icon will launch a separate window detailing the security properties of the webpage. (How to tell if the Page is Secure)
  9. Create strong passwords: A password should be easy for you to remember and hard for others to figure out. A strong password should be 10 to 14 characters in length. The longer the better but only if you’re able to remember it. Avoid any password based on repetition, dictionary words, letter or number sequences, usernames, relative or pet names, romantic links (current or past), or biographical information (e.g., dates, ID numbers, ancestors names or dates). A password should include numbers, and symbols if allowed by the system. If the system recognizes case, use both capital and lower-case letters. On another note about passwords don’t leave them out where people can see them. A strong password is nothing if you leave a hard copy of it under the keyboard, taped to the desk, or even worst attached to the monitor. Hard copies should be kept in a digital wallet or safe. Also switch it up don’t use the same password for everything. If someone can get into your email that is bad enough you don’t want to give them access to your bank information also. An addition authentication tip is to confirm your user account does not have administrative access on your computer. If for example you are a regular user and despite having anti-Malware software installed, some malicious software gets through, the malware software would only be able to affect your profile and not your computer’s operating system as regular users cannot install most software. (How to Create and Strong Password)
  10. Wi-Fi Settings: When using public or personal Wi-Fi, be sure to turn off file sharing (Windows) by going to your control panel, selecting network and connection, tab to advanced settings and adjust accordingly. In addition you can activate privacy settings and change the firewall configurations in the same location. Make sure that you have an active firewall and ensure that you turn off the Wi-Fi when no longer using it. It’s also worth mentioning that users should always have their home Wi-Fi connections encrypted so users can’t stand around your house and access it. Also make sure no one is hovering to get your login password.

Hope these tips can help! It is only by taking preventative measures like these that we are able to hopefully stay ahead of cyber crime.

Keep your information Safe and Have a Great Day!


Providing Tech Support to Businesses in Maryland

Firewalls are an Absolute Necessity When Using the Web

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

Hey, everyone, welcome back to the Computer Fitness blog!

Keeping your data safe and secure is a necessity in any business. Clients don’t want their private information being leaked all over the world, and who can blame them? We all want to make sure our privacy is protected at work and at home. Well, there are a lot of ways to ensure that you remain safe on the web. Today, we’re going to talk about one of them: Firewalls.

Picture a wall in your head. Now cover it in fire. That’s effective imagery, right? You wouldn’t be able to go anywhere near it. That’s the aim of firewalls on computers. They act as barriers to prevent people from just coming in and getting what they want. They are meant to establish lines so thick that nothing can penetrate them.

Getting a firewall is easy. All Windows and Mac operating systems have them built- in. They are also usually enabled by default. This is good because it keeps you from having to configure this yourself. They automatically block most ports you won’t use, and keep open ones that you will. A good example is port 80, which is the default for web browsing. That will be open, while others will not.

There are other forms of firewalls you can employ, and all have varying degrees of strength and customizability. For a home user, any good Anti-Virus bundle will include a more powerful firewall that is better equipped to handle your PC’s security.

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