Hacking is the unauthorised intrusion into a computer system. The reasons behind it vary: financial gain, corporate espionage, blackmail, intimidation or the challenge. Hacking is punishable by law.
Has your website been hacked?
Hackers are very inventive and use all kinds of techniques. Ultimately, however, it almost always boils down to them finding and exploiting weaknesses in a system. And that system could be your website, for example.
You, as a domain owner, are often not aware that your website has been hacked. It may happen that cybercriminals use your domain name for fraudulent practices such as phishing without you noticing. Or cybercriminals may silently access your databases, user data, customer files... linked to your website or web shop.
If hackers get hold of bank data, individuals or companies can suffer significant financial damage. If they get their hands on your sensitive files or manage to shut down important websites completely, cunning hackers will resort to blackmail. They can also resell your data to others.
Cyber criminals can hijack your domain name and use it for malicious purposes. In such case, you yourself no longer have access to your hacked domain account. Your customers or website users also risk falling into the hands of the fraudsters.
Website hacked? Here is what you need to do!
When you, as a domain owner, notice that your domain name is being abused or your website is not accessible in the normal way, it is in your best interest to take action as promptly as possible.
- First, take your website offline for review and analysis.
- Next try to identify and fix the cause of the hack.
- Then restore a backup of your website or have that done by whoever built it.
- Also notify the relevant authorities immediately so that they can take appropriate action in turn.
DNS Belgium works with various partners and government bodies to keep the .be domain safe and reliable. When we discover abuse in a particular .be domain name, we automatically send a notification to the registrant and his or her registrar. It is then up to the domain name holder to remove the pages or website that have been hacked.
How do you protect the website from hacking?
There are all sorts of ways to protect your website from hacking:
- If you use a CMS to manage your website, make sure the software is always up-to-date. Limit the number of plug-ins and modules you use, and make sure they are also kept up-to-date.
- Make sure file and folder permissions are set correctly.
- Do proper account management.
- Choose strong passwords for managing your website and change the default admin username.
- Use the admin role only for people who actually need to be able to do everything.
- Create a narrower role for users who can only manage content.
- Never let users share accounts by logging in together using the same login credentials. Create a separate account for each user.
- Back up your website at regular intervals and ensure you can restore it.
- Do a security scan or have one done.
The technical set-up of your website also determines its security. Be sure to contact your hosting partner or registrar if you have any questions about securing your website.