For those of you who don’t know how malware works, and how Ashley Madison got so infected, database infection all boils down to the evil bots.
A bot is simply a chunk of automated software that has set functions. Other reference terms for bots include spiders, crawlers, scrapers and harvesters. Most of the benign types of bots help your site because it’s these that build your directories, do marketing functions, and perform analytics and other activities.
Then we have the evil bots which are also known as “hackbots” and this is essentially what makes up all the different types of malware which are referred to as viruses, Trojans hoses, worms, ransomware, adware and all the other malicious beasts crawling the web and probing at your site and database.
How does it spread and infect a site or database? Some are spread by what is called executables which is compiled software and often referred to as a “bot farm.” Most often though, most of these malicious bots are spread by sites already infected.
The first trick to avoid these nasty bots is to have a virtual private server and to avoid shared hosting services to host your site. These are actually rated annually so you might want to Google “Best Small Business Web Hosting Services.”
If you do use a shared hosting service, one of the most important things you need to do to protect yourself is always use a powerful password. Avoid all nouns or well known names and other words from the dictionary as these guys already are using algorithms which scan for all these weak type of passwords. They are likely probing your site right now.
Strong passwords can’t be emphasized enough and should be used for client portals, FTP, CMS admin area, and well frankly – everywhere. Use a weak password and you’re immediately vulnerable.
Another approach is to ensure that you keep your plugins, themes and core installation always up to date with latest developer releases.
The truth is that no website or database is invulnerable, but a few simple procedures will foil the hacking attempts of the majority of these vicious little hackbots.
To protect your database and business website, Sysoft can evaluate your security in full and provide the solutions you need, so call us at (416) 410-7268 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org today so you don’t become tomorrow’s Ashley Madison.