What Are the Best Tips for Web Content Security?

Alex Newth

Web content security is a big issue for both large websites with intricate content systems and databases and small websites with a simple Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) interface. One of the first big things a website owner must understand is that, even if the website is small and does not contain any valuable information, it can still be targeted by hackers. The site owner also should check the website for input errors, such as those allowing users to write HTML or other coding into input areas. Other areas to check to ensure web content security are user permission settings and data validation. One also should understand phishing scams and refrain from placing sensitive information in the coding.

Protecting a website's coding can prevent viruses from being input.
Protecting a website's coding can prevent viruses from being input.

Many website owners, both large and small, typically believe they have a website that will not be hacked or is not worth hacking. This is probably true for most website owners, especially those who own small websites and just post information about daily life. Most hackers attack large websites, because they have valuable information, but others attack small websites just for fun. Regardless of the website’s size, it may be hacked, so security should always be on the owner’s mind.

Many website owners typically believe that their individual website will not be hacked.
Many website owners typically believe that their individual website will not be hacked.

Many websites have an area where guests can enter data, such as a comments section. If a website has no boundaries on what values can be entered or allows programming languages to run from these inputs, a virus can easily be placed in the input. For example, if the comment section allows users to run JavaScript®, then a hacker can enter a script to steal the website’s cookie information. To guard the web content security, the administrator must set inputs to keep programming languages from activating.

On a website on which many users work at once, all of the users’ permissions should be placed at a minimum. If a user only needs to read some information from a database, then the administrator should only allow this privilege and nothing else. Authentication and validation programs help with security, checking all incoming and outgoing information. While most workers will not steal information, they work the closest with the website and can easily endanger web content security.

Phishing scams can be used to enter a website and rewrite or delete all the web content. In a phishing scam, a hacker will send an email, posing as a business such as a domain hosting business. The email will say that the host needs sensitive information, such as the webmaster’s administrative password. Administrators should never give out sensitive information in an email, because this will almost assuredly lead to web content security issues.

In many programming languages, there is a tag that allows the programmer to write a note. These notes are usually something small, such as detailing what a function does, but other notes are dangerous. Some new programmers may leave a password in the code, which can be read by anyone. Administrators and programmers should check for any sensitive information like this and should immediately delete it from the code.

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