There are few things worse than having your website hacked and your customer’s personal information accessed illegally by a third party. The plague is worse, but only just.
One of the risks inherent with online marketing is the vulnerability to hackers and other unscrupulous characters. This is also one of the main reasons customers list as to why they don’t shop online.
If you want to keep your customers happy and your blood pressure at a normal level, here are a few tips to remember to keep your site secure:
Picky Password: If you’ve ever seen a spy movie you know how easy it is for hackers to break into accounts. In reality, it’s likely a little more difficult, but don’t make it easier for the buggers by choosing passwords a three-year old could guess.
Each year a list of the most popular passwords is collected, here are 2012’s big winners:
- letmein (my personal favorite)
To be it delicately: if you use one of these as your passwords, you deserve to be hacked. Also avoid using your kids names and birthdays unless you combine them in a funky combination only you’ll know.
No copying: Do not use the same password for every single account you have online. If a hacker figures out the password to your email account and you have the same password for your bank account… do I need to expound
Get it right: A secure password should be at least 8 characters long. A really strong password contains at least one capital letter, a number and a symbol. A simple way to do this is to take a common word and mix it up. For example: If you wanted your password to be ‘A Great Big Leap Forward,” you should consider typing it like this instead “a gr8 BIG leap 4ward.” It’s pretty simple to remember the substitutions, but trickier for a hacker to access.
Storage: Obviously remembering your passwords for a million different accounts is going to be tricky. And most people have at least a few (e-mail, bank account, Facebook, Twitter, website, credit card accounts, shopping accounts, Netflix and any online billing accounts.
If you even have half of that and you have a different password for each, it’s going to get tricky to remember them all. One way to keep track of your passwords is to utilize a password storage app. There are a few options, you’ll only have to remember one password to log in and refresh your memory.
Another option is to store your passwords in a word document and encrypt the document with a password. Whatever you do, don’t slap your password on a sticky note and stuff it in a drawer.
If you want to keep your information safe as well as your customer’s personal information take the time to choose a secure password. You’ll lower the risk of hackers accessing your accounts significantly. Hackers are less likely to keep attacking if it’s not easy to get in.
photo by: Alexandre Dulaunoy