Website security is among the top concerns of many website visitors. Who would want their personal information being used without their consent, right? As a website owner, it is your responsibility to ensure that your system is protected against hackers. What’s one way to do that? Simple. Through the help of a website security audit.
What is a Website Security Audit?
A website security audit is simply a method of assessing one’s website system. It includes evaluating website extensions, security controls, policies, loopholes, and other potential threats that may harm a website’s information and other assets. A website security audit checklist usually involves thorough static and dynamic code analysis and error and configuration tests. A website security audit is also done on both website and web applications.
A website security audits must be done regularly to protect system data and assets against vulnerabilities. Mastering how to do a website security audit checklist the right way makes it easier for any business website to assess its security system. A website security audit is also one of the most effective ways to see if the system protocols employed by an organization from pre-established criteria are met.
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A reliable website security audit includes assessing the following:
- Website Extensions
- Emails, Themes and Software
- Various Server settings
- System Information Handling Process
- SSL connections
- Third-party mechanisms
What is the importance of Website Security Audit?
Still undecided on mastering how to do website security audit? Well, you’ve got nothing to worry about because we in Strikingly got your back. Below are some of the best reasons to convince you why you need to learn the art of website security audit.
1. Protects Resources and Brand Image
Website security audit saves you from bankruptcy and website shutdown. Cyber-attacks brought by malicious websites can have a significant impact on any business website. In just a matter of seconds, all your hard work building a good image could go to waste. Data breaching can also tear your established reputation apart. Website security audit helps you to prevent these things from happening. Once you master how to do website security audit regularly, you will be able to shield yourself from all the hazards of online data hacking. Plus, a thorough website security audit helps you gain your followers’ trust and even makes them spread the good news of how good your professional website is. After all, gaining more audience and not losing them is what your main goal is, right?
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2. Verifies Security Protocols
All players have their own set of guidelines which they use to win their game. This is also the same with businesses and websites. To perform well in the field of ecommerce there is a need for website strategies and protocols. Having a built website security audit checklist helps verify if all created system methods are working or not. Knowing how to perform a website security audit can also give you a clearer picture of what is wrong within your system once troubles arise.
3. Creates Protection Against Hackers
Hackers are among the top threats in the IT world. They can have the power to manipulate your website and, worse, destroy it. Hackers can also get your system information and even your customer’s personal data in just a blink of an eye. A reliable and robust website security audit can help you prevent all of these. Another importance of a website security audit is that it can help you list all known website weaknesses and misconfigurations ahead of time. Once you have already figured them out, it is now time for you to take immediate measures and safety precautions before website attackers find them. By understanding the art of how to do website security audit, fixing system problems will just be a piece of cake for you.
4. Reveals System Threats
Another importance of website security audit is that it can do more than website scanning. A website security audit checklist equips organizations with accurate perceptions on the severity of every malicious threat found on their system. This is very important because it can also assess the possible consequences to the organization and its users. A website security audit generally helps both the development and management team. It enables them to give more attention to high-risk issues and formulate an effective step to solve them.
5. Examines Data Flow
Website security audit is one best tools for an exemplary data flow within your organization. It can help you review your system for anti-data breaching measures. By doing this, you are ensuring that your organization is not losing important data. A reliable website security audit can even check if essential information included in your system is being stamped or stolen.
Things to include in your Website Security Audit Checklist
Now that you finally understand what website security audit and its importance is, it's now the time for you to learn how to create your own website security audit checklist. Got no ideas how? Don’t worry because we in Strikingly will make things easier for you. We listed below all the best ideas you should never miss when creating your website security audit checklist.
1. Password Security
Password security is amongst the top concerns of website users. Who wouldn’t worry when passwords serve as the primary protector of a website against online attackers? Once a weak password is manipulated, personal data can be leaked in just a short period. Website security audit helps in creating policies concerning strengthened website password creation protocols. Adding password security in your website security audit checklist is a must to ensure that your organization’s employees and users follow the best precautions in password protection.
When creating website passwords, always make sure to make a strong one. A good password includes a combination of letters, numbers, and even symbols. You can even use a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters to make it stronger. It is also highly suggested for passwords to be longer. The longer the password is, the harder it will be for malicious hackers to discover.
2. SSL Certificate Renewal
A website security audit isn’t complete without the presence of an SSL certificate review. SSL certificates are essential in website building. Without it, your website will surely be in trouble. SSL certificates act as the body that ensures all communications within your business website are encrypted. Business websites, specifically online stores, are more likely to handle sensitive information coming from their customers. As the owner, they must ensure that each data shared is highly kept confidential and is well-protected. This includes securing information like card details, financial information, customer’s addresses, purchase details, shipping details, and many others. Having a regular website security audit can help you a lot in this case.
3. CMS Settings
Content Management Settings is another factor you should never miss in mastering how to do a website security audit checklist. It is a must to check if your CMS Settings are updated or not. Pop-up notifications usually show on your screen to inform you if an update is available for your system.
When you perform a website security audit, always check your CMS Settings to strengthen security walls within your website. A reliable website security system also helps wipe out all vulnerabilities within your CMS Settings, which could harm sensitive data and result in cyber breaches.
During your website security audit, you should ensure that you check your Content Management System’s settings to ensure security. For instance, you should always ensure that the CMS is up to date. Usually, a notification will pop up on your screen once a new update is available. By conducting frequent CMS updates, you will be strengthening your security walls and wiping out any form of vulnerability that could lead to a cyber breach.
4. System Permissions
Data breaches are caused mainly by internal factors. Your way of handling files and giving access permissions tell how secure your website will be. User permissions are essential in making a website security audit checklist because it helps in protecting sensitive data. When a user has permission to manipulate or make changes within a system, he can freely access it. On the other hand, if the user does not possess the required authorization, he cannot touch anything. Through this, a system can be protected from an unknown website user. There are two general types of permission settings that you should be aware of:
A. User Permissions
This type of permission allows access to authorized users who want to make changes on a website. You cannot give access to everyone. When doing a website security audit, always employ website elements and requirements for a standard user to make changes and access important information.
B. Owner, Group, or Public Permissions
When conducting a website security audit, specifically allowing permissions, always categorize users into groups. For every group, set a specific level of access to information. For example, owners can read and edit a file, while public users can only view and not change it. Including this in your website security audit checklist will make it easier to monitor and identify those who are accessing your data.
5. Latest Software Updates
Content updates is another idea you should always include in your website security audit checklist. When doing your regular website security audit, always check if your website is running on the latest software. System updates help improve your website performance, fix loopholes, and even add the newest features that your users will surely appreciate. Including software updates on your website security audit helps in protecting your website against hackers. This is also one of the reasons why website developers continuously create different versions of various software.
6. Extensions and Plugins
Extensions and plugins are also prone to loopholes. If not handled well, they can bring massive threats to your website. Extensions from third-party websites can harm you and your user’s privacy. To avoid these from happening, always include these for your regular website security audit. Ensure that only relevant website extensions and plugins are installed within your system. You can also check if these extensions came from the official website stores and not from malicious websites.
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Get Protected with Us!
Being able to perform website security audit scans can do more than just detect your website vulnerabilities. Ever since website security audit has been developed, it has helped many website owners maintain good system conditions. Most importantly, it helped business website owners to create a solid connection with their audience.
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Having a partner in website building can make it easier for you to understand the importance of website security audit. To find the right one, always choose someone who can understand what you really want and support you with what you really need—just like how we do it in Strikingly
Strikingly is among the few website builders that got the job right, specifically in website security. Our platform is equipped with built-in analytics and reliable password-protection to prevent unnecessary access to your website, in addition to an internal security system we have in place. Our Happiness Officers are available 24/7 to answer your concerns. You don't have to worry about keeping your website secure as Strikingly does that for you.
Curious about more? Chat with us today.