Your corporate website is more than just a business card since it is the most significant asset your organization holds for providing vital information to customers. A security breach on your company’s website from hackers can be devastating to your organization’s reputation amongst your clients. Exposing customer data to attackers impedes all efforts made to build a strong brand since customer trust is compromised. Hackers will be out to take advantage of the vulnerabilities existing in your website using ransomware and malware infections hence the need to deploy a comprehensive enterprise risk management (ERM) strategy to keep data safe.
Why Do Hackers Exploit Corporate Websites?
For a small company operating an innocuous website, it would be hard to understand why hackers would target the site. Surprisingly, hackers target these websites since they are aware of the unsophisticated owners and the fact that search engines and malware companies are less likely to trigger warnings, making it easy to gain access and implant malicious malware for your customers to download and expose their non-public data.
Corporate Website Vulnerabilities
Vulnerabilities may exist on your website when there are system flaws that allow attackers to access and manipulate non-public information. Various forms of vulnerabilities exist in the corporate world compromising your system’s safety. Here are some of the most common vulnerabilities:
This is the most commonly exploited web application vulnerability that allows hackers to manipulate what you would term as insignificant elements of your application to gain access to corporate data. Attackers use exposed application elements such as URLs to change, copy, corrupt, and interact with information stored in your database.
Cross Site Scripting
Broken Authentication and Session Management
With most websites prompting customers to log in to access the required information, hackers take advantage of the login configurations to manipulate data. This usually happens if you allow users to remain logged in in the same computer. Hackers apply session fixations by preventing logins from timing out hence can access the data hidden in cookies and URLs allowing them to recognize visitors and creating new sessions with the data obtained.
Misconfigured Security Protocols
These attacks arise due to lack of security sophistication on web servers, applications, and data servers. If you fail to personalize passwords and use default settings, hackers will exploit the default settings and access non-public information. You can prevent such attacks by disabling unneeded accounts and installing software updates immediately they are made available.
Cross-Site Request Forgery (XSRF)
XSRF, commonly referred to, as Sea Surf or Session Riding, is the trickiest form of vulnerability used by hackers to access data by exploiting your website’s codes. The hacker studies the code of your application and redirects traffic from unsuspecting users. This vulnerability is usually used by hackers to gain access to your login information saved on computers and use the credentials to make purchases, log in to other sites, or transfer money.
Protecting Your Corporate Website Through Enterprise Risk Management Strategy (ERM)
ERM is a holistic approach that ensures the protection of your customer’s data and your organization’s internal information. Security breaches to your organization’s data can damage your reputation and tear down all the trust you have taken years to build with your customers. In a digital era where customers seek quality services, any malicious attack can trash your company causing loss of revenues and customers to competitors.
Since Google states that the number of website hacking is likely to increase in the future, it is essential to integrate ERM strategies with the aim of lowering your tolerance to risks and motivate increased security measures. The following points will help you make the necessary changes to your corporate website and security protocols to enhance the security of your company and customer’s data.
As new threats continue to enter the market, software developers will keep up with the threats by providing updates and patches to protect you against the latest developed attacks. Be aggressive to monitor the most recent security software updates and protect your company against potential malicious attack.
Parameterized queries are alternative mitigation processes that protect your organizations and customers’ data. Your customers should be required to respond to individual queries that will help them gain access to your website. This keeps off hackers since they will be necessary to identify the correct input and parameters relating to the data for them to gain access to your site.
The need for increased security protocols has led to the switch from HTTP to HTTPs to create a secret handshake between your website and its users making sure that no one gains access to the website during a person’s session. The transfer of data using HTTPs promotes enhanced data encryption keeping everyone safe.
When looking at the client-facing aspects of your business, it is crucial to ensure that all users have a strong password, which may include a defined number of characters with a mix of symbols and cases. Despite how to strong a password may look, it is vital for them to be changed regularly to reduce potential manipulation and security breach to your organization’s data.
How Automation Tracks Your Website Protection and Strengthens Your ERM Strategy
After reviewing and mitigating your security risks, you will be required to continuously monitor these controls to thwart potential manipulation of the controls. Adopt and implement an automated GRC platform as a way of providing visibility into compliance. A key advantage of implementing an automated system is assigning tasks thus reducing the amount of time and effort required to coordinate schedules and execution to reach and keep your compliance.
With website hacking cases on the rise, maintaining the security of your website will require continuous monitoring and adjustments to current security trends. Stay abreast of the latest security threats to your corporate website by implementing a detailed ERM strategy.
Ken Lynch is an enterprise software startup veteran, who has always been fascinated about what drives workers to work and how to make work more engaging. Ken founded Reciprocity to pursue just that. He has propelled Reciprocity’s success with this mission-based goal of engaging employees with the governance, risk, and compliance goals of their company in order to create more socially minded corporate citizens. Ken earned his BS in Computer Science and ElectricalEngineering from MIT.