Secured Hosting – Security Considerations to Think about When Hosting your Website.

Today, many savvy businesses make use of their website and the increasingly essential blog section to engage with their existing customers and reach prospective clients.

It thus comes as no surprise to see the huge time and financial commitment invested in the digital aspect of business, with companies going above and beyond to ensure they are leveraging this powerful marketing medium.

Business owners are creating great looking websites that not only boast an attractive web design, but also optimized for eCommerce, mobile responsiveness and other essential features.

They are putting together amazing online marketing ideas to ensure their brand gets in front of their target audience. And a majority are finally coming around the importance of creating great content and the impact it has on their SEO.

All of which is perfectly fine. And we laud them for that. Truly do.

Problem is, many business owners are focusing their energies on these areas while overlooking one other important aspect of a good business website: hosting, or secured hosting for that matter.

Before we delve into why you need secured hosting, it is good to be mindful of the parties that may precipitate you to sign up for this service in the first place.

Who are you protecting your website from?

To make sure we are reading from the same hymn sheet, it would be sensible on our part to first explain what we mean by website hosting.

In simple terms, hosting, also known as web hosting or website hosting, is a phrase that refers to the business of holding, serving, and maintaining files for a website.

You see, when you build a website, you will need to make sure that everyone can view the website when they type in the respective web address (for example Were it not for web hosting service, visitors to your website would not be able to view the information on your website.

Now, the importance of secured hosting cannot be emphasized enough. More often than not, it can be the difference between your business succeeding and failing, more so if you are an eCommerce business owner.

As business operations continue to shift online, so is the prevalence of bad actors intent on cashing in through all sorts of ways – identity theft, ransomware and other malware, phishing, hacking, scamming, you name it.

Basically, there are two types of people you should be aiming to protect your site from.

The most prevalent and most malicious is the identity thief, those bad actors who carry out the kinds of activities we just mentioned.

These guys try to find loopholes to collect information for personal gain. They are online criminals who operate surreptitiously, hoping to carry on unnoticed for lengthy durations in order to cast their nets wider in terms of the number of victims they can access.

There are also others who may be out to cause harm to your website but have no aim to steal from you.

This lot is especially made up of a significant group of hackers who are mostly out to cause disruption. They unleash havoc for their own fun or to challenge themselves that they can disable an organization, often working in a hit-and-run fashion. You will know they were there because they often leave behind graffiti on the site, changing the page for the world to see.

This type of attack can cripple your website, leading to extended downtime and ultimately a loss of revenue.

As an online business owner, it is your duty to not only keep your company’s data safe, but also safeguard your customers’ privacy.

Importance of Secured Hosting

As much as there are security precautions you can take on your own such as, for instance, making use of SSL certificates, using strong passwords to protect the bank-end of your website, and ensuring your CMS platform is up to date, you should go the extra length to make sure you are hosting your website with a provider who takes your web hosting security seriously.

Because let’s face it, web hosting services are not equal. There are those who will guarantee you first-rate security, but there are also others out there who offer bogus services.

Some businesses make the mistake of opting for the most pocket-friendly option they come across; others confine their search to web hosts who only offer particular features. Ample disk space, for example. Or bandwidth.

The search for a reputable web host who can guarantee secured hosting is not made any easier by the proliferation of hosting services. However, it would be wise to steer clear of the lure of super cheap hosting because, as some have woefully found out, this is often a false economy.

If you are hosting your website on any of those “eat as much you can for a dollar” servers, it would be illogical to expect high-level security. If anything, you will constantly find your server’s IP address being blacklisted.

Unknown to many, the benefits of good hosting extend beyond just your website’s security. Good web hosting affects many other key aspects of a great website – site availability (aka uptime), speed and loading times; search engine (SERP) rankings even! True story.

Google, as do many other search engines, penalize websites that have a tendency to go down a lot. Not only that, website security (converting to HTTPS in particular) is now being used as a SERP ranking factor.

While it doesn’t improve your ranking directly per se (at least for now), the continued push by Google for a more secure web may see HTTPS have an increased impact on search over time. Still, as for now, it could come in handy in the sense that the improved security it brings helps you avoid data theft and damage to your website’s authority and reputation.

Features of Secured Hosting Plans you need to be Thinking about

There are so many options out there when it comes to web hosting that it can easily get confusing when looking through potential candidates for your secured hosting needs.

You are free to choose an affordable web hosting package, but it is paramount to ensure the necessary security measures are in place. Question is, what are the important things you should be looking for when evaluating the security of web hosts?

Following are four of the crucial web hosting security features you cannot afford to overlook:

  1. SFTP (Secured File Transfer Protocol)

If you have ever had the chance of uploading website files to your hosting account, then chances are you may be conversant with FTP (file transfer protocol). You employ an FTP client to move your files to the location you want them uploaded following which they are published to your account.

SFTP follows a similar concept only that this time, it is promises better security since it brings an extra layer of protection by encrypting files using the 128-bit encryption. Not that we are rubbishing FTP – it is fairly secure. But the issue is that it is still vulnerable since files may be intercepted (modified even) without a trace of that happening.

The aim of SFTP is to seal this loophole.

When choosing your next web host, check to see if this option is available.

  1. SSL (Secure Sockets Layer)

SSL is a term you must be coming across more frequently these days. This is one of the must-haves for any business that is selling products and/or services online.


In an age where data theft technologies have advanced, it is SSL that ensures all private information remain just that: private – credit card/bank account information, email addresses, phone numbers and physical addresses.

Without this security precaution enabled on the server hosting your website, you and your customers remain at the mercy of online criminals. That is assuming, of course, customers will even be willing to purchase from you to begin with if your site lacks an SSL certificate.

In other words, without SSL, not only do you lose business, but also prone to hacking attacks.

Remember that the modern shopper is well-informed when it comes to matters online security. They look for this sign (the padlock symbol or HTTPS sign on the address bar) when checking out of your store and are likely to abandon cart if you do not have this certificate.

A good deal of web hosting providers often advertise SSL as part of their hosting package, but this is not always the case. Typically, you need to pay for an IP address and then the SSL certificate. Pay attention to this.

  1. Data Backup

Many people are aware of the importance of backing up the data in their local hard drive, but the importance of backing up their website files is often taken too lightly.

As you too well know, there is a lot of work that goes into putting together a website, and you may be surprised to learn that a simple technical issue or natural disaster affecting the hosting company could cause them to lose a server, and with it, all the data on it.

Many web hosting companies worth their salt provide redundant backups that ensure customers like you do not lose their website data in the event of server failure. However, to be on the safe side, make sure your web hosting plan automatically carries out routine server backups.

  1. Server Network Security

While the three aforementioned features are nice provisions by a web hosting provider, secured hosting is not complete without an understanding of the server and network security the provider has in place.

When evaluating your host’s network infrastructure, some of the important things to keep an eye on include spam filtering, detection system virus filtering, DDoS filtering and firewalls. Monitoring the network infrastructure is a preserve of the hosting provider, but it pays to be privy to these factors since hackers tend to attack the servers first.

Last Word

There are many other secured hosting features aimed at protecting your website files and online transactions. But the four factors we have discussed in this post should be the bare minimum you should demand from the web hosting company hosting your website.

Otherwise, it may be high time to switch to a provider who offers a full-fledged hosting environment that takes care of all these issues. And more.