How to do a Magento Security Audit on your website?
Magento is a very popular and widely used CMS for ecommerce. If you have an online store then chances are that you are familiar with Magento. Online stores and e-commerce sites are one of the most targeted websites by attackers. An online store must have strong security to not only protect itself but also its customers’ data which includes their personal and payment details. Thus, to ensure complete security, regular Magento security audits are required.
Table of Content
- Why does your website need a Magento Security audit?
- Security Areas to audit in your Magento website
- How to carry out a Magento Security Audit?
- Tips to save your Magento stores from security threats
Why does your website need a Magento Security audit?
In 2013, Target, a retail giant, discovered that more than a 100 million customer’s credit card and personal data was stolen. Such attacks are possible because of hidden and undiscovered vulnerabilities in websites and services that attackers are always on the hunt for.
A Magento security audit involves finding and fixing these vulnerabilities in a website to secure it from such misfortunate events. A meticulous security audit scrutinizes your current security system, as well as, the web app system to detect security loopholes and gaps.
A timely Security Audit also helps you in avoiding any downtime due to attacks on your website. A typical Security Audits includes testing for minor or major code issues, plugin issues, business logic errors, configurations, etc. Hence, a Magento Security Audit helps in improving the overall health of the website. Further, regular security optimization and improvements are crucial to tackle new and unprecedented attacks by attackers.
Security Areas to audit in your Magento website
The different areas that a Magento security audit needs to cover can be divided into three parts:
Your website will be collecting personal data including their transaction details, thus the security audit has to ensure that data on your website is non-accessible by all users. You also need to check for all the security patches. Check if the code has been changed by any extensions, ensure the payment gateways are secure and also the administrator rights are suitably provided.
The combination of security and performance status decides the overall health of the website. An overall health check should check the core edits in your Magento website and any overrides to the core codes. In this check you should also look at how the third party extensions or modules perform, state of all records, settings that control the administrator privileges, to name a few.
How to carry out a Magento Security Audit?
We will be getting into the process of conducting a Magento security audit since we already know how important it is. Below are some of the tools that you can use to carry out a complete security audit:
This is a very popular vulnerability scanner, developed by Mozilla Foundation. This scanner uses various methods to find vulnerabilities and bugs on your website. The scan is divided into 4 parts: HTTP Observatory, SSH Observatory, TLS Observatory, and Third-party tests. All these scans crawl through your website and identify the weak spots.
Once the weaknesses are known you can work on them to strengthen your website’s security system and protect it from most of the common attacks.
Image Source: Mozilla
This free tool provides one of the best frameworks for a Magento security audit. It has more than fifty thousand tests to detect any vulnerability and security loopholes. Easy to use and the dashboard provides a complete picture of a website’s security.
Nmap is a tool that can provide a lot of detailed information regarding the target, which is your own website. From version detection to open ports on your server, Nmap scans are powerful and sneaky enough to get you all the details.
Image Source: Astra Security
It is one of the best tools used for exploitation. It is regularly updated and can be easily deployed and used to find vulnerabilities in a website. It can be used for penetration testing and also for IDS signature development, making it an important tool for a Magento security audit.
Image Source: Medium
Tips to save your Magento stores from security threats
So now we know how to find gaps in our website’s security through Magento security audits. Magento Security Audits are sure to help you locate those vulnerabilities and patch them.
Besides a full blown audit, following a few basic steps can save us from a majority of threats. These steps are the first line of security for your website:
1. Magento version: Magento releases newer versions with updated security features and patches for vulnerabilities or bugs. Older versions may contain vulnerabilities that can be exploited by attackers. Thus, updating to the latest version of Magento will protect you from known bugs and vulnerabilities.
2. Two-factor authentication: Using a single level of authentication always runs the risk of being cracked. Add Two-Factor Authentication on your website. This added layer of security ensures only authentic customers login to your website.
3. File permissions: If the Magento file permissions are not properly set, then anyone can access sensitive core files of your Magento website. File permissions are set based on the type of users and file. Core files should only be accessible to administrators and locked out for other users.
4. Hosting service and SSL: Cheap and shared servers are often less secured. Moreover, they do not offer much room for proper management. Opting for paid or virtual private server (VPS) is a better option since they have much better security and lets you add features that you require. Also, having an SSL certificate ensures that your website has a secure connection. Opt for a paid SSL certificate from a trusted source.
5. Backup: Having a backup of your data can protect your website from extended downtimes in case your website gets hacked. You can quickly restore a clean backup in such a case. If available, try using the online backup service provided by your server.
Thousands of Magento sites get infected by Redirection hack, Japanese SEO Spam, credit card hacks, and Bad Bots daily! Overlooking your Magento website’s security will only bring you adverse consequences. And a Magento security audit is a vital part of it all. We already discussed why. The blog also mentioned how you can do a complete Magento Security Audit yourself. More and more website owners have started taking security seriously. It’s high time that you did too.