December 04, 2012, 2:05 PM — Online security is, of course, critical if you are running a small business website. It's essential to have antivirus and spyware protection software in place to protect your computer, at home and on the road.
Popular antivirus, antimalware and registry programs that will keep your machine safe and running well include AVG Free, Spybot Search & Destroy, Microsoft Security Essentials, Malwarebytes Anti-Malware and ( Piriform CCleaner.
The Microsoft and AVG programs work equally well, but the former is free of ads and update nags, and the latter is not. Both are also good for spyware protection, though Malwarebytes is better at deep search for malware. Meanwhile, CCleaner is the most stable of the registry cleaners I researched. All of these programs are free, though AVG and other are also available by paid subscription.
VPN, SFTP Enhances Hosting Security
Another important area of security to address is your hosting service provider, as this is where many breaches begin. WordPress is a great content management system, but it's prone to hacker attacks.
One way to secure your WordPress installation is to make use of a Virtual Private Network (VPN) with a hosting service such as Turnkey Internet. A VPN offers many ways to protect your installation, though you'll need to check with each hosting provider to see what's available. As an example, make sure they offer cPanel, which makes it easy to do database backups.
When you upload files to the server, use the Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP). One good freeware program for doing this is WinSCP.
It's important to use strong passwords and change them regularly. If your SFTP programs allow for it, use all the available characters on your keyboard and use password combinations of 16 characters or more-Y(^&)/E%#V^(!d+dk for example.
Use Password Protection Programs