What is Data Security and Why You Should Care About It

6 minutes reading


As an Internet user, you have surely bumped into terms like “Data Security” and “Data Breaches”. It is essential to be well-aware of these terms from a user’s point of view, but they are critical if you run an online business. It is obvious that the threat landscape is moving rapidly, and safeguarding data becomes more and more challenging. Big companies are no longer the only target of cyberattacks. In recent years, studies show that around 50% of attacks target small and mid-sized businesses. The most concerning part in this direction is that security tends to be often overlooked. The consequences of such attacks are usually fatal, and compared to the big players, small companies are less likely to recover from them.

 

Data Security
Source: SmartAction

As a web hosting provider, we understand our part in securing our clients’ websites. As we take security seriously, we have implemented proven practices and technologies on our servers. We have combined several components, including Advanced Network Firewall and WAF, Live Security Events Monitoring, DDoS Protection Service, Malware Scanning, Proactive Zero-day attack detection, OS Patch Management Feature, and Connections Level Limits. An in-depth explanation of how the technologies we use actually work you can find on our Security page. Aside from the server-side, there are several fundamental precautions to take to safeguard your website and your data.

What is Data Security?

The term “Data Security” refers to the set of standards and technologies organizations and businesses implement to collect, store, create, receive, and transmit sensitive information. This includes the manners in which digital data is being processed and guarded against corruption, cyberattacks, data breach, and unauthorized access whatsoever.

All businesses deal with sensitive data on a certain level. From huge banking conglomerates processing personal and financial data to small businesses storing the clients’ contact details. When you collect any sort of personal data, you become a data processor. This comes with a lot of responsibilities. The importance of protecting data from security threats is indubitable.

With that said, let’s review the base data security standards you must implement to protect your online business from malicious intentions.

Encrypt Data

Data Encryption is a security method that encodes information and requires a user encryption key for accessing or decrypting the data. Encrypted data, also referred to as hypertext, appears in a human-unreadable format and it is indecipherable to an entity accessing it without the required permission.

SSL Secure HTTPS Connection

SSL (Secure Socket Layer) is a cryptographic protocol designed to encrypt the data transmitted over a computer network, for example, between the browser and the server. Running your website over the secure HTTPS protocol is an obligation when it comes to processing data securely. In our previous blog post, we have presented an in-depth explanation of how exactly SSL/TLS works and why you must have one. Considering the level of availability of SSL, the ease of installation and configuration, this is certainly something you must implement.

As security is our top priority, we do offer free SSL certificates with all our hosting plans. If you are already a HostArmada client, be sure to check with our support team that your website is properly configured to force the secure HTTPS connection.

Enable Two-Factor Authentication

Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) is an authentication method that requires a user to present additional evidence in order to be granted access to a website or an application. In the most common form, 2FA requires a security code, which is sent to an external source. For example, that could be an email account, phone number, or mobile device. The fundamental idea of Two-Factor Authentication is to protect your account in case your login credentials get compromised. In such a scenario, the attacker will still need to provide additional verification that could only be acquired from an outside source. Taking this into account, the chance of getting through is significantly lower.

While many users tend to avoid implement 2FA due to its recovery complexity if security is your top priority, you should definitely consider implementing it. Considering that the integration of Two-Factor Authentication in the most popular open-source applications has been already significantly simplified you will be able to blend it without any effort.

Maintain your Passwords Wisely

Implying a security practice that enforces password expiration and complexity is a resistant precaution that you should consider. Login credentials are often neglected by many users, which leads to a massive security hole and fatal consequences. Most users tend to follow the terrible pattern of not only using weak passwords but utilizing the same password for several accounts. This, without a doubt, is the worst imaginable practice. Not only the password is easy to crack, but if someone with ill intentions successes, the outcome will be immense damage.

Secure Password Practices

You should treat your passwords as the keys for the kingdom. It is also your sole responsibility to educate your employees and encourage your users to do the same.

A proven practice in this direction is to frequently update passwords. It might not sound like the most convenient resolution, but it can definitely help mitigate potential damages.

Regrettably, the Internet space is full of people with ill intentions, and more security vulnerabilities and threats are continuously being discovered. While you can never be 100% safeguarded, it is your responsibility to give your best efforts to improve your security as much as possible. What we have pointed out in the above lines is only the fundamental forethought you need to take seriously for lowering the risk of a data breach. There are a lot more security practices that you might need to imply.