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4494 views · 3 years ago

People that visit your website face an invisible threat each time they log on. Small businesses are especially vulnerable to digital data breaches, and that can change the way your customers feel about you. But, although you cannot stop hackers from trying, there are things you can do as a business owner to make your website a safer experience for everyone. Keep reading for tips.

Mature digitally.

You may be ahead of the times when it comes to products and services, but, chances are, your website hasn't fully kept up. It's time to learn all you can about the internet and digital security. If you are already somewhat tech savvy, a PHP Security Course from Nomad PHP can help you better understand everything from cryptography to website error messages.

Adapting to today's digital environment means transforming your website to quickly and easily identify threats via machine learning and network monitoring. And, as Upwork explains, digital maturity not only keeps your website safe, but adopting this mindset can also increase your efficiency and accuracy by reducing human errors.

Understand the threats.

It is not enough to simply keep up with your website, you also have to understand the types of threats that are out there. You're likely familiar with ransomware and phishing, but, it's also a good idea to know how a website can get hacked. Your site's content management system and vulnerabilities within your operating system are all weak points that hackers can easily identify.

Insist on security measures.

When customers log into your website, they input their credentials. Each time they do so, you can best protect their information by keeping your systems up to date. You'll also want to ensure that your site is hosted on a secure service and that you have an SSL certificate installed.

If you are not already, have your IT department or managed IT services perform regular website security checks. PhoenixNAP, an IT services provider, notes that those websites working via WordPress should also be safely outfitted with the most recent security plug-ins.

Eliminate spam.

If your website allows for comments that are not manually approved, anyone on the internet can post. This leaves it open for hackers and other unscrupulous individuals to comment with spam and malicious links that your customers may inadvertently click on. While many of these simply exist as a way for the commenter to drive traffic to another website, others are designed to draw your readers' attention, gain their trust, and access their personal information.

Prioritize passwords.

Your customers' passwords are the keys by which they open the door to your website. Unfortunately, many people do not treat them with as much care as they do the keys they use in the non-digital world.

It's true, passwords can be a pain, but you are not doing yourself or your customers any favors by allowing simple one-word passcodes to access your site. Instead, design your site to require a strong password. How-To Geek asserts that this will have a minimum of 12 characters and include a combination of upper and lower case letters, symbols, and numbers.

While you will likely rely on your IT experts to secure your website, the truth is that it is ultimately up to you to ensure this is done. So even if you are not a digital mastermind, knowing all you can about web security can help you be a better business owner. Your customers will be safer, and a secure website is just one way to strengthen your business's online presence and keep up with today's -- and tomorrow's -- technology.
4707 views · 5 years ago
PHP Basics

It's 2018, and you're a top-notch modern web developer, with a load of knowledge and tools right there at your disposal: Google and StackOverflow, debugger with a GUI, IDE with autocomplete, you name it. Occasionally, though, you still find yourself in a plain old text console on a remote server, or you have to do something without IDE, or there is no network connection... In such cases it might be helpful to feel comfortable in a simple terminal. In this post I'm going to list some switches for the PHP command that you can use to get information and some utilities.

Getting basic information about PHP

$ php -i
PHP Version => 7.2.10-0ubuntu1

System => Linux awesome 4.18.0-10-generic #11-Ubuntu SMP Thu Oct 11 15:13:55 UTC 2018 x86_64
Build Date => Sep 13 2018 13:38:55
Server API => Command Line Interface
Virtual Directory Support => disabled

Full information about your PHP interpreter. Pipe the output to the Unix less command in order to get pagination and search: php -i | less. Type Q to exit the less shell. Some distros might lack less, in that case you may try php -i | more, which doesn't give you search but still has pagination.

Want a short summary of which PHP extensions you have? Just ask:

$ php -m
[PHP Modules]

More specific info about core and extensions' functions and classes

Full information about functions and classes provided by an extension:

$ php --re ds
Extension [ <persistent> extension #46 ds version 1.2.6 ] {

- Dependencies {
Dependency [ json (Required) ]
Dependency [ spl (Required) ]

- Classes [11] {
Interface [ <internal:ds> interface Ds\Hashable ] {

- Constants [0] {

- Static properties [0] {

Information on a specific class:

$ php --rc Ds\Vector
Class [ <internal:ds> <iterateable> final class Ds\Vector implements Ds\Sequence, Traversable, Countable, JsonSerializable, Ds\Collection ] {

- Constants [1] {
Constant [ public integer MIN_CAPACITY ] { 8 }

- Static properties [0] {

Same for a function:

$ php --rf fopen
Function [ <internal:standard> function fopen ] {

- Parameters [4] {
Parameter #0 [ <required> $filename ]
Parameter #1 [ <required> $mode ]
Parameter #2 [ <optional> $use_include_path ]
Parameter #3 [ <optional> $context ]


Ever found yourself creating a dummy PHP file of just a few lines - only to be run once and then deleted? The -a switch might be what you're looking for:

$ php -a
Interactive mode enabled

php > var_dump(join(", ", [1, 2, 3]));
php shell code:1:
string(7) "1, 2, 3"
php >

It starts an interactive shell so you can type any PHP code and execute it straight away. Requires PHP to be compiled with readline support (most distros have that anyway).

Want a quick check for any parse/syntax errors in a PHP file? Use linter:

$ php -l test.php 
PHP Parse error: syntax error, unexpected 'array_shift' (T_STRING) in test.php on line 4
Errors parsing test.php

It has a web-server!

Yes! Just in case you missed it, as of PHP 5.4.0, the CLI SAPI provides a built-in web server. Want a quick look at a web page generated by an app? Here you go:

$ cd /my_application/document_root
$ php -S localhost:8000

Then open http://localhost:8000/ in your browser of choice and enjoy!

Hope you also have enjoyed this reading. Your feedback and questions are always appreciated!