Modern web development must overcome challenges like accessibility, responsive design, and security. Unfortunately, these challenges are often overlooked or ignored.
Websites are prone to security risks because they connect to web servers. There are anticipated risks such as misuse of network resources by employees. However, your web server and the site it hosts presents your most dangerous source of security risk.
Web developers believe they pose no security threats and are therefore not a target. But the truth is that you never really know if or when you are.
Data is a massive asset to hackers who seek more than usernames, passwords, and credit card numbers. Whether or not you think you’re a target doesn’t matter. You must protect yourself and your users from potential vulnerabilities in your app or site.
In this post, you will learn how to set up your website security as a developer. It also shares the most common vulnerabilities and how to leapfrog them.
What is website security?
Website security refers to commands or applications that secure data or prevent the exploitation of websites. It is a system of measures and protocols that protect your site or web application from online threats. VPN’s like Avast are among the many ways in which you can secure your website.
This division of Information Security serves to protect websites, applications, and services. There are multiple factors that go into web security and web protection. For example, different types of checkpoints and techniques back up secure websites or applications.
There are a variety of security standards that must be followed at all times. These standards are implemented and highlighted by the OWASP (Open Web Application Security Project).
What you need protection from as a web developer?
Most experienced web developers follow the standards of the OWASP. They also keep a close eye on the Web Hacking Incident Database to see when, how, and why different people are hacking different websites and services. As a developer there are common vulnerabilities you should be aware of:
Cross-site scripting (XSS)
Cross-site scripting or XSS, occurs when the code is injected from the client-side into legitimate websites that would otherwise be trusted. This allows the attacker to execute malicious code on unsuspecting end users. This type of attack often occurs on web applications that include user input that isn’t validated in some way.
Client-state manipulation happens when the server provides state information to a web-client (browser). It is then passed back as part of an HTTP request from that client.
Cross-site request forgery (CSRF)
CSRF is commonly referred to as XSRF. It occurs when an attacker uses an HTTP request to access authenticated user information from another site. These types of attacks target state-changing requests rather than data theft since the attacker cannot see the response to the forged request.
An example of CSRF might be changing login credentials or making a purchase. A server isn’t smart enough to see if a request was intentional or not. It only recognizes the command and performs it, whatever it may be.
SQL injection is a technique that uses code injection to attack database type applications. Hackers insert malicious SQL queries via input from the client to the application. The impact of this vulnerability is only limited to the attacker’s skill and imagination. It means that the effect can prove fatal to your site.
How to improve website security
Now that you’re aware of the different threats, you must protect yourself from there. Below are common security measures you need to set up for your site:
Encrypt your login pages
Use SSL encryption on your login pages. SSL allows the secure transmission of sensitive information such as credit card numbers, social security numbers, and login credentials. Information that you enter on an encrypted page is meaningless to any third party who might intercept it.
Use prepared statements with variable binding
This allows the database to distinguish between data and code, regardless of the submitted input. Whitelisting is also a good defense. It specifies what the input should look like and does not allow input that doesn’t match the specified pattern.
Unique tokens are difficult to spoof. They can be sent with the request and validated by the site, which prevents attempts at CSRF. You can also validate origin headers submitted with requests.
Keep your software up-to-date
Websites hosted on a content management system (CMS) are prone to vulnerabilities and security issues. For WordPress users, you need to download third-party plugins that have insecure codes. Hackers can easily exploited these and leave your data exposed in the process.
You can prevent this from happening easily. Update your apps and plugins regularly. You may also use VPNs like Avast and the like to keep your online activity anonymous. Finally, reading about third-party apps before installing them helps you determine which ones to use.
Use a secure host
Choose a reputable web hosting company with a proven track record for security. It should back up your data to a remote server and make it easy to restore in case your site is hacked. Finally, they should offer ongoing technical support whenever necessary.
Web security is essential especially for websites or web applications that deal with private or protected information. That is why security methods continuously evolve to match the different types of vulnerabilities that exist.