The way in which you access your website can really open the front door to hackers. If you don’t put much thought into choosing your username and password, you are at a higher level of risk of being hacked. Unsure of what I mean? Let me explain in more detail.
Choosing A Username
The login area of a website is possibly the most vulnerable. This is especially true if the default main user has the username of either Admin or Administrator. While I recommend that you set up a different username, don’t worry, as even web hosting companies use this as a default when installing some websites for users. Doing this just means that any potential hacker has one less layer of protection to uncover. It is normally quite a simple process to change this.
If you are using WordPress for example, your best choice would be to add a new administrator user to your WordPress account with a different name. Give it all the same administrative privileges, just with a better user name. Log out, and then log in with your new admin user. Once you are happy that the new admin user can do all you need to do, simply delete the old admin user.
This has the added security of removing the first user, or the user with the ID of 1 in the database. A user with the ID of 1 is most often the main user with all administration rights enabled. Removing this user ID also helps to frustrate hackers attempting to gain access.
Creating A Password
The same applies to your password. You should never use the same password across all the sites you log in to. Once one site is hacked or attacked, it will be easy for your other sites to be hacked too. Don’t choose a simple to guess password either. ZDNet gathered together the 25 most used passwords. Make sure yours does not appear in the list!
There are several ways to choose a password:
- Use a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols along with upper case letters
- Use a password generator
- Make your password a short sentence with letter, numbers and symbols
Whichever method you choose always write down your password as well. It is advisable to even keep a notebook for this. If your computer ever crashes you will still have all your passwords to log back into your sites and services.
Generating Secure Passwords
Two of the top password generators are LastPass and 1Password. Your internet browser has the ability to save your passwords too, but this may not be as safe. If you use a password generator all of your information is stored behind a Master Key or Password, which the company does not save. This makes it extremely difficult for anyone to hack your password manager and gain access. Just remember to store this main password in a safe place.
It is very easy to select the same password for all of your online dealings. Of course, it makes it easy for you to remember. But if you do become a victim of hacking, it makes it simple for that person to access everything too.
Always take the time to create new individual passwords for all of your sites. Make a note of them and keep a copy in a safe place, away from your computer. This will help protect not just your websites but any online accounts you have.
By taking time to ensure you follow these simple tips, you will have a much more secure online presence.