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No Website Is Immune From Cyber Attacks

No matter what industry you’re in, your website is among your most important assets. A web presence is a must-have for maintaining credibility in today’s connected landscape. And for many firms, a public website is a direct source of sales or even a user-facing product unto itself. But however your website fits into your business strategy, there’s no question that protecting it is a critical part of your security posture.

Unfortunately, keeping your website protected isn’t as simple as buying a software product and checking off a box. The hard truth is that thousands of new threats are emerging every day, and no website is ever completely immune to them.

Your organization can mitigate your risks and keep hackers from wreaking havoc on your website. But to establish effective security, you need to understand what threats are out there and how to stay ahead of them. To help, we’ll explain a number of ways your website can be compromised, and what you can do to fight back:

  • Cross-site scripting (XSS): XSS is an attack method that analysts and pen testers recently thought was under control. However, attacks have been surfacing at major internet companies, raising critical vulnerabilities. What’s particularly concerning is that the attacks, which place client-side malicious code into web applications, are growing in sophistication.
  • SQL injection: By inputting malicious scripts into a vulnerable SQL database, hackers can install malware on a company’s web servers. This attack type made major headlines last year when researchers discovered approximately 1 million WordPress websites were vulnerable.
  • Distributed denial of service (DDoS): DDoS attacks — in which hackers shut down web resources by flooding servers with requests — are a common occurrence on the contemporary web. They are a go-to method for hacktivists and a part of the cyber-extortionist’s toolkit. Currently, Cisco Systems is tracking a massive network of DDoS clients, which have been compromised by a complex malware program called SSHPsycho.
  • Ransomware: Also highlighted in Cisco’s annual report is a massive increase in ransomware activity, which has surged by 221% on WordPress websites over the past year. According to the report, 60% of server exploitation payloads are ransomware, in which a hacker locks up an organization’s web servers or other resources, then demands payment to free them.

Reducing your risk of critical website attacks requires a multifaceted approach, but you can take the necessary steps regardless of your organization’s size. While you may be running vulnerability scans on your web servers, these scans can only find known issues, and weak points specific to your organization’s systems may go unnoticed. This is where skilled penetration testers come into the picture, using up-to-date real-world hacking methods to see where you could run into problems.

If you want to build out or update your web applications, mitigate your risks up front by partnering with a cyber security consultant specializing in secure development. And for ongoing monitoring of your web resources, leverage the sophistication of a security operations center without having to build one internally by hiring a managed security vendor.

Lunarline is an industry leader in every service you need to support a secure website and shut down any threats that come your way. For more information, visit us online at Lunarline.com or contact us today.

About Spence Witten

Spence has somehow survived ten years at start-ups and small businesses without suffering a (major) nervous breakdown. As Lunarline's Director of Federal Sales, Spence actually loves working on proposals. If there were any doubt, this is proof that he is in fact certifiably insane. While his title says "Sales" Lunarline doesn't let him off that easy. We make him do real work, too. Luckily he's a recognized subject matter expert in security policy and loves helping clients navigate their way around tricky security compliance standards. He's also been known to lead a software development initiative or two, though that pretty much always ends poorly for everyone involved. He can be reached at spence.witten@lunarline.com.