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Secure Hosting Services Are A Necessity For Any eCommerce Website

by John Lenaghan

If you're doing business on the internet, secure hosting is an absolute necessity. There are so many security threats in today's online world - and so much personal information stored online - that security is not an option.

When you are looking for a web hosting company for your web site, here are a few things to keep in mind regarding security...

First, ask the hosting company whether a cage structure has been put into place on the server. A cage structure gives each website on the server complete privacy from all the others. None of the sites can interfere with another, or with the underlying server.

Ask your host whether unproven code is permitted on the server. The better hosts do not allow unproven code to be installed on the server, in case it compromises security for other sites on the same system.

Find out what kind of maintenance and upgrade schedule the host uses. Operating system and server software updates should be installed on a regular basis, to plug new security holes and keep the system as secure as possible.

Security audits should be done regularly as well. Good hosting companies will audit their own systems to ensure that they are secure and hackers are not able to bypass the security.

The server should be behind heavy duty firewalls - much more than the "consumer grade" firewall that most people run on their own computers. These firewalls will also prevent other websites on the server from initiating attacks.

What You Can Do To Secure Your Site

One of the simplest ways to improve your security is to use strong passwords. Your passwords should be at least 8 characters and use a combination of letters, numbers and symbols.

Avoid common words as much as possible and especially avoid things such as familiar names or other personal information that could be easily guessed.

Make sure you are running anti-virus and firewall software on your own computer to be sure that nothing gets transferred from your system to your server when you are working on your website or with email.

Thursday, Sep 14th, 2006