Website Security and SEO – Staying Safe and Getting Results
For several years now, digital platforms have dominated our entire lives, and every self-respecting business owns a website.
Most business owners understand the power of the web and want their site to appear as high as possible in Google search results. to succeed in doing so and indeed star in the search results, you need to invest in search engine optimization (SEO) and do it perfectly to slay the competition and win the first and coveted position.
Although I can’t teach you the whole art of SEO in a mere 500-word article, I can guide you through one of the most important, yet at times somewhat ignored elements of SEO – website security. We will talk a little about the effects of website security on every aspect of website promotion, what it entails, why it’s important for your website and the consequences of not taking it seriously.
The negative consequences of poor website security
Websites are intended to serve 2 groups: 1) The users – by satisfying their needs and desires on the one hand and 2) The website owner(s) – by leading potential clients to their business.
The users want to browse websites that interest them and those that can provide them with their desired “product”. When a site is not secure, information may leak and the aforementioned users will not want to visit this site again, as it does not protect them or their private information/
The damage to your user’s trust is so great that the site may not only become unpopular but actively avoided.
Website security is a key parameter in Google’s site ranking
In 2014, Google officially announced that website security will be a key parameter in deciding the website’s ranking in the search results. The great importance that Google attaches to the field of website security, stems from the growing amount cyber-attacks against various websites on the web.
In 2018, Google decided to start marking unsecured sites using SSL licenses. Although this marking only appears to users who use Google’s Chrome browser, it may deter many users from visiting the insecure site and a decrease in the number of visits to the site. Hence, the great importance of purchasing an SSL license for the security of the site, and all this regardless of the quality of the website’s content.
What is an SSL?
SSL, or Secure Sockets Layer, is an encryption-based Internet security protocol. It was first developed by Netscape in 1995 to ensure privacy, authentication, and data integrity in Internet communications. SSL is the predecessor to the modern TLS encryption used today.
A website that implements SSL/TLS has “HTTPS” in its URL instead of “HTTP.”
Types of hacks that affect site promotion
One of the most surprising facts about website hacking is this – ready? Nearly two-thirds of website hacks are due to reasons related to website promotion!
Surprising, right?! But even worse is the fact that only about one-eighth of the sites that were hacked, were notified about the hacking. Meaning about 87% of website owners that were hacked aren’t even aware they were hacked!
Several types of cyber-attacks affect your SEO efforts, among them are the attacks that affect the speed of the website and its loading time, hacks where your website becomes a “platform” for SEO sabotage. This sabotage includes placing sketchy links, creating low-quality pages, and adding loads of useless code to slow down the website.
Popular Hacking Tactics – What to Look Out For
Beyond the more familiar hacking tactics, there are more and more unique ways to hack into your website in such sneakiness, to the point where you are the ones who practically invite hackers to infiltrate your website. A good example of this is WordPress Plugins.
All you have to do, to prevent this type of hacking, is to simply run a query across the web about the plugin, and ask around if anyone has had a bad experience with the said plugin.
Make sure you scan your website for malware once in a while. to make sure you stay on the safe side, because, as reiterated – 87% of hacking goes unnoticed.
I was attacked! What now?!
Once your site has been compromised, go to an expert. I suggest you contact your SEO manager, Webmaster, or any other professional that is in charge of your website. It’s not enough to repair the damage that has been done due to the attack but also find solutions to prevent any future attacks.
It might sound ironic, but some great plugins can keep your website safe and secure. In addition. It’s best to work with a qualified and professional SEO company that knows how to secure your website properly.
In conclusion, don’t wait for something to happen to secure your website. Ensure adequate security is put in place that will contribute to both the promotion of the site and your peace of mind.