A hacker is a person who uses computers to gain unauthorized access to data. And the process of gaining unauthorized access is called hacking. There are several reasons why hackers hack websites. Knowing these reasons can help you improve your website security. Therefore, in this blog post, we are going to list the top reasons why hackers want to hack your website. Keep these points in mind while securing your website.
1. To steal data
You might have already guessed this one. One of the most important reasons for hackers hacking your website is your data. They want to gain the data on your website. The data may be of your customers, employees or business. In most of the cases, hackers target big businesses to get more attention. Here are the two popular examples.
Ashley Madison and the Starbucks app hack had rocked the Internet. Especially, the former one. In Ashley Madison hack, hackers were able to breach the web security and get access to all the private data including private photos of world-famous celebrities. So, if you have sensitive data on your website, you need to be extra careful.
Most of the time, hackers also steal information to study your personal identity and then use the same thing to transfer money, get a loan, etc. These hacking incidents have increased, especially after the inception of Internet banking and mobile banking. Some of the businesses that were hacked in the past are Yahoo, eBay, Sony, Adobe, etc.
Although many hacks have shocked the Internet world, people still believe that this cannot happen to them. This ignorance further makes an easy way for hackers to steal your sensitive information.
2. To steal money
The next big reason for hacking a website is money. Most of the hackers prefer money over the data. With the increase in online banking, it has become easy for hackers to hack your website and steal your money. Most of the time they just look for the security vulnerability in the website of fairly big businesses.
The day they get any security vulnerability they will exploit it to make your balance nil. So, if your website deals money, hire a web security expert to maximize the security, so that you have 360° protection.
3. To disrupt services
Hackers usually like to take websites down. And when they do, they leave a statement on the website. They do this by manufacturing bots that overwhelm a server with traffic, which leads to a crash. This is popularly known as Denial of Service attack (DoS) and is capable of putting a company’s website out of service.
In the last couple of years, DDoS attacks have become popular. DDoS stands for Disturbed Denial of Service. This type of attack is carried out by using multiple infected systems so that the single major system leads to denial of service. These two are not the only methods to disrupt services. A hacker can use one among many other methods.
Infecting a large network with malicious software installed onto one computer is also a common method used by hackers. This is usually done via email. This leads to a chain reaction affecting the whole network. As a result, the server is disrupted.
4. To make a point
If you think hacking is done only for the sake of money and information, then you are wrong. There are some interesting hackers out there. They do hacking to make a point. They do not care about money or data. In fact, they have some other purposes. Let us give you an example.
In the first point, we have already mentioned about Ashley Madison hack and explained how it rocked the digital world. In this particular website hack, the hackers had account details of 32 million users. After hacking they left a message on the website to inform everyone about what they thought about the website. The message was clear that the service like this one was immoral.
So, here, in this case, the hackers were not looking to make money. They were trying to make a point, which they did.
5. To get attention
This might surprise you. A lot of hackers are young. And they sometimes do hacking for surprising reasons. Here are some surprising reasons that motivate a hacker to hack a website:
- To kill boredom
- To compete with other hackers
- To gain name and fame
- To have fun
When the hacking is done for these purposes, no money is asked. It eventually exposes certain vulnerabilities. In the end, you can improve the overall security efforts.
6. To leak the sensitive information
This is also one of the common reasons why hackers hack a website. In most of the cases, the hacker hacks personal and private data and leaks them. The main motive behind leaking sensitive information is to take revenge.
Leaking sensitive information will kill the credibility of the business. As a result, the company loses its online reputation. For this reason, website security is one of the most important aspects of online reputation management. In addition to that, when your website is hacked, it takes your website ranking to the lowest. Therefore, even SEO experts emphasize website security.
So, if you collect user information, you must never overlook site security. It is always a good option to contact a web security expert.
7. To vandalize a website
This type of harm is usually caused when the website runs an ideology that is completely opposite to the hacker’s ideology. Therefore, most of the time political and religious websites are targeted and vandalized. However, this can also be done to deface a certain popular figure and cause severe damage to his public image.
Here the main aim is to hurt religious and political sentiments. Sometimes this type of hacking is done for fun without any political intention. The other categories of websites that suffer vandalism are school, college, institution and organization websites. In most of the cases, the students of an institution hack its website.
If you own a school, college, institution or organization websites, then encourage your students or employees to embrace ethical hacking. Use their knowledge to strengthen your security system.
8. To spread viruses
A virus is a code which is capable of copying itself and has a severe effect such as corrupting the system and harming the data. Sometimes hackers hack a website to spread these viruses so that they hack several other websites.
Hackers achieve this by writing malicious code into the backend or with files they have uploaded for download on the front end. When the site visitors interact with such content, it gives hackers an opportunity to steal visitors information.
9. To steal server bandwidth
This is another common reason why hackers try to hack your website. Hackers use this bandwidth to host their own activities, for example, bitcoin mining and brute force attacks on other websites.
It is easy to prevent bandwidth theft. A simple Google search will give you all the necessary information including causes, prevention, and solution. Here is the guide to prevent bandwidth theft or hotlinking.
10. To host legitimate pages on your web server
It is not common these days, but one cannot guarantee that this is not going to happen. Hackers try to host legitimate pages on your web server to improve their own search engine optimization (SEO). These pages talk about them and link back to their websites. In other words, they try to build links illegally.
11. To host phishing pages
Phishing refers to a malicious individual or group of individuals who scam the people on the Internet. This is commonly done by two methods. That is either by sending an email or by creating webpages. Since our blog post is on the topic “11 reasons why hackers what to hack your website”, we will discuss how hackers achieve this by creating web pages.
By creating fake web pages on your website, they attempt to collect information from your website visitors who are willing to give it. They usually do this by embedding a contact form on one of your web pages and asking the visitors to enter their information.
What do all the hacked websites have in common?
Lack of website security is common among all the hacked websites. A recent study tells us that online hacks cost medium and small sized businesses nearly 200 thousand dollars every single year. The study also revealed that more than 60% of these businesses normally shut down their businesses, as they cannot survive the damages caused. All this can be easily avoided if you have a proper security system.
How can you protect your website?
There is a lot that you can do to protect your website. For now, we are giving some top tips that will help you to protect your business site, here we go.
- Backup your site frequently
- Secure your site at all levels
- Make use of security plugins
- Use SSL certificates
- Use unique and strong passwords
- Hire a professional