Tag Archive | "Anti Virus"

Securing Your Online Business

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Securing Your Online Business

Some recent security breaches such as the whole LulzSec affair have been reported in the media, where groups of hackers have targeted companies such as Sony, as well as agencies of both the British and American governments. Many online business owners are wondering what they can do to keep from becoming a target of hacking attacks. Here are some things you can do:

  • Make a risk assessment

This basically depends on how big and popular your website is. There is little prestige for a hacker group to attack a website of a small business which contains no sensitive information. However, this doesn’t mean that you should not take any precautions and there are still some reasons as to why you may get hacked, which brings us to the next point:

  • Avoid making people angry

Obviously, don’t go on “underground” websites and start taunting hackers. But also, you should know that certain hacking attacks have been motivated by revenge against businesses who are alleged to have engaged in disloyal competition, intentionally sold poor quality products, or otherwise ripped off their customers or business partners. So in other words, try hard not to make anyone angry at you.

  • Use security measures, such as encrypting your customer information database

While no e-commerce or content management system is completely secure, they all have security features either built in, or available as external plugins. Learn what they are, how they work and what they do. And don’t forget to PUT THEM TO USE! Also, avoid systems which store sensitive info, such as customer details in plain text without any encryption.

  • Secure your own computer as well

Make sure that any computer you use as part of running and administering your website or online business is free of malware, such as trojans and keyloggers. Quality anti virus and anti malware programs exist and there are some excellent ones, such as AVG, which are completely free. Therefore, there is no reason for you not to use them, as they are FREE!

  • Exercise common sense

This is quite simple to do… but yet a lot of people fail and fail hard here. Don’t use “password” as a password for your web hosting account. Don’t leave the passwords at the default password for the system you are using either. Don’t open attachments in emails if you have the slightest suspicion it may not be a legit file. And if you have to visit “naughty” websites or download pirated software… at least don’t do it on a PC you use for your business, as these are also a popular source of viruses and malware.

  • Get a security analysis of your site done

There are many online security firms that can do a complete security analysis of your website for a very low cost. They can point out any security vulnerabilities that your website has and then tell you which actions you should take to plug these holes.

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Is Dedicated Hosting the Right Choice for You?

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Is Dedicated Hosting the Right Choice for You?

If you are thinking of starting an e-commerce website, then one of the first things that you would think about would be getting a reliable web host where you can put your site on. Anyone who is going to run an online business will need a web host. Basically, you have two options: either get a shared hosting account or rent a dedicated server.

Someone who is serious about running a successful e-commerce website will often choose to host their site on a dedicated server rather than a shared account. Here are the advantages of using a dedicated server:

More resources just for you. A dedicated server is just that: a server that is entirely dedicated for your use. No other sites are hosted on it, so its entire bandwidth, CPU, disk space and RAM are for your use only. While you may think that you would do fine on a shared account at the beginning, once your site expands you may find that you actually need your own server as your website has gotten bigger.

Better security and reliability. This advantage is the result of the fact that, once again, your server is not shared with any other site. There has been numerous occasions where a site that is hosted on a shared server has been compromised and viruses and malware have been introduced, which have infected other sites on the server. When you use a dedicated server, you get access to security solutions such as anti virus tools, firewalls, etc.

Increased flexibility and more control. You get the choice as to whether you want to run a Windows or a Linux operating system on your server. Another great point is that you have complete control as to what applications, software and scripts you can run on your server. Many large e-commerce sites require the use of software which would not be supported on a shared account, but can be easily installed and used on a dedicated server.

Selecting a Web Host

In the world of web hosting, there are hundreds of different companies that you can choose from. While they may all look to provide the same services, you should know that not all web hosting companies are the same.

When you select a web host that offers dedicated server hosting, you will need to look far beyond the price in order to make the right decision. If you simply go with the company offering the cheapest price, you might end up getting the cheapest service. Many of the “rock bottom” priced servers are actually run by individuals located in third world countries, where connectivity and reliability are not all that great.

Do a search online for reviews of dedicated server hosting providers and see what these reviews say. Also, take a look around webmaster forums to find out which companies fellow webmasters are using and whether they are satisfied with the service. This will help you narrow down your search to companies that you would want to do business with.

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