When selecting a web hosting provider, security should always be top of mind. After all, your website and customer data could be at stake!
Hackers are always finding new ways to breach security protocols; luckily, secure hosting providers stay one step ahead. Here are some points you should keep in mind when choosing a secure web host:
1. Look for a SSL Certificate
When collecting private information from visitors, an SSL Certificate is an indispensable component. These certificates create an encrypted link between a web server and visitor browsers to protect data transmission between them; especially important if handling sensitive data like credit card numbers and passwords.
When searching for a hosting provider, prioritize one who offers SSL certificates as part of their services and ask about their validity period and renewal procedures.
Cost of SSL certificates depends on their level of validation as determined by a Certificate Authority (CA). Domain Validation SSL certificates are often free through your web host, while Extended Verification (OV and EV) require site owners to go through an intensive verification process in order to get issued an official SSL certificate.
Once a website is equipped with an SSL certificate, its URL will begin with HTTPS instead of HTTP, signaling to customers that their personal data is secure and that it’s legitimate. Furthermore, Google considers website security an integral factor when ranking websites; having one can further boost search engine rankings.
Make sure your hosting provider prioritizes security on its servers by regularly updating software on their servers. Hackers are constantly adapting their attack strategies, and outdated software could allow attackers access to your data. Look for providers offering security patches to their software as well as transparently reporting server uptime statistics. Furthermore, find out whether they offer regular backups as well as disaster recovery plans in case data loss events occur; ideally these backups should be stored offsite so if ever compromised you have copies available to restore.
2. Look for a Firewall
A firewall acts as an intermediary between your website server and outside traffic, blocking hackers, viruses and malware from invading it. Furthermore, it encrypts data to protect sensitive customer passwords and credit card numbers that reside on your web server from being exposed without authorization from outside sources. Be sure to look for web hosts that offer firewall protection as part of their package or as an additional service.
Web Application Firewalls (WAFs) are another critical security measure, protecting websites and servers against attacks such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting and other forms of malicious code. A WAF can be installed both at host or cloud levels and is an essential requirement for websites using dynamic pages, social media integrations or third-party apps.
Look for a web hosting provider who updates their servers regularly to protect yourself against hackers’ attempts at breaching your defenses and cyberattacks. Hackers are constantly creating new ways of bypassing security measures, so ensuring your web host keeps current with latest patches is essential if cyberattacks threaten your site. If none are offered by your host provider, installing software patches yourself may be necessary to keep your site safe from cyber attacks.
When selecting a web host provider, it is also beneficial to inquire whether they provide unlimited bandwidth. Though not essential, this feature will allow your business to run at full speed without incurring traffic limits that result in slower load times.
Malware is an ever-present risk to website security that can steal, alter, and encrypt data – as well as spy on visitors’ online activity. When choosing a hosting provider for your site, ensure it offers protection against malware as well as intrusion detection systems and DDoS attacks.
As part of your decision-making process when choosing a web host provider, it is also crucial that they offer outstanding customer support and have a history of uptime. This will enable you to develop positive working relationships while decreasing risk due to downtime or lost revenue.
3. Look for a Network Monitoring System
Your hosting provider plays an essential part in safeguarding the security of your website, but as site owner it is your duty to take several additional measures to maintain its integrity. Make sure your software, plugins and themes are free from hacking attacks as well as using strong, hard-to-guess passwords on both accounts as this will prevent hackers from hijacking them and accessing sensitive data that could disrupt business operations.
Additionally, it’s advisable to verify whether your web hosting company offers a network monitoring system. This can protect against hackers, malicious bots and Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks; top web hosts often include multiple layers of firewalls as well as monitoring their networks regularly for suspicious activity.
A quality web host should also offer malware scanning features to protect their clients’ websites and detect and eliminate any harmful code, software, or processes before it causes harm or compromises the integrity of their site. These tools will detect and delete harmful threats before they have the chance to do so.
Make sure that your web hosting provider offers an effective backup system in case of server or database failure, with at least two forms of backup available: physical copies in another location and digital archives that can restore to a previous version of data. In addition, make sure to ask how frequently they perform backups and how long they keep them for.
When selecting a web host, it’s also important to assess their customer support services. Should any technical queries or problems arise, an effective host should respond swiftly and accurately; so when selecting your host it is wise to find one who offers live chat or phone support as this can provide fast answers quickly.
4. Look for a Backup System
At the last thing you want is for your website to go down due to a cyberattack or another unexpected event, so it is vital that your hosting provider provides a backup system. This can allow you to restore it if anything gets corrupted or deleted. As different hosts offer different policies regarding backup, make sure you understand exactly what to look out for; some will only create backups weekly or monthly while others offer daily or daily backups – the more frequently a host creates backups, the better!
A reliable web hosting provider should also offer daily security scans to detect and remove malware from websites, and prevent future attacks by identifying outdated software that hackers could exploit to launch attacks on.
Find a hosting provider with guaranteed server uptime guarantees – downtime can have serious repercussions for businesses that rely on online stores for product and service sales, particularly reputation damage and sales loss. Check reviews on social media or forums to gain an understanding of a provider’s uptime performance as well as support services.
As you search for a web host provider that best meets the needs and budget of your organization, be sure to consider factors like overall bandwidth/storage capacity/scalability/security features as you make your selection. If your plan is to expand over time, look for something capable of accommodating increased visitor numbers as well as additional content.
Seek out a web hosting provider with multiple data centers to ensure quick load times, which will enhance visitor experience and help drive conversion. Ideally, look for one who provides live chat and phone support so that any issues can be quickly addressed, while some even offer knowledge bases as a great way to save time by saving you from waiting on an agent response to any queries that come your way.