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Tips For Storing Your Customer Information On Your Website
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Tips For Storing Your Customer Information On Your Website

Today, I'm going to share some tips on storing your customers' personal information on your website. With data breaches and identity theft on the rise, it's important to keep security as your number one priority when developing a website where you store client's personal data.

Never store your customers passwords in a database without very high quality encryption first. Not using extensive encryption methods can lead to your customer database becoming a higher target for cyber criminals. These criminals go after the lowest hanging fruit generally, and if your website does not have top-notch security measures in place, then your website will be a very high profile target.

Hacker Methodology

When hackers gain access to website databases, one of the first things they look for is a "Users" table. This table often contains information such as username, e-mail address, password, physical address, phone numbers, etc. If the password field is completely open to prying eyes, then that is very dangerous situation for you and you customers.

Hackers will then try to use all username and password combinations on other sites all around the world, including e-mail servers, online banks, etc. It's very easy for hackers to do this because they have realized that a lot of people use the same password on multiple sites, even though this is a very bad idea.

Use a Highly-Rated Security Package

It's generally not a good idea to write your own security system if you don't know exactly what you're doing. The Internet is full of would-be criminals, and many of them try to crack into websites simply for the fun and enjoyment or the thrill of doing so. If your website doesn't have the latest security patches installed or firewalls against the latest threats, you become an even larger target.

Hackers will use your site for spam distribution, for key logging, or a huge number of other illegal methods to obtain personal information from your users.

No Plain Text Passwords

Still, one of the most important things you can do is to not store any databases in plain text. Always use encryption. If the programmer for your website does not understand what you mean by encryption, find a new programmer.

It's most certainly worth your time and money to hire someone who knows what they're doing rather than to place all of your client information into the hands of an amateur. What was acceptable 10 years ago for website design is now a thing of the past. Always stay on top of the latest patches and security measures.

This month is national Cyber Security Awareness Month, so everyone needs to be aware of the security measures that are required in order to secure your business from hackers. Identity theft is a serious problem, and exposing your customers to that threat unnecessarily is not advisable. Informing your clients how to prevent identity theft may be a good idea as well, as they are more likely to trust you if they know you have their best interests at heart.


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