A quick guide on HTML and CSS security

The internet world is rich with websites that help businesses market their products, interact with their clients, and create reputable brand names. And HTML and CSS are the two most common components you encounter without even realizing it.

However, sadly, a big chunk of this population falls prey to cybercrimes daily because of the lacking security measures applied. These cybercrimes come in various forms like clickjacking, adware, DDoS attacks, ransomware, etc.

Join us in our newest publication:

Overall, HTML and CSS are not big on the threat scale. However, articles about their vulnerabilities do appear occasionally. Developers should evaluate such threats and determine whether they need to take any action.

Why is website security important?

Website security is essential for several reasons:

  • This saves the cost and downtime associated with an attack.
  • It helps to ensure that the website remains available to legitimate users.
  • Protect the reputation of the website and its owners.
  • It saves you from getting blacklisted by the search engine.
  • It prevents legal liability, i.e., being sued for negligence in case customer data gets stolen by hackers.

What are the security threats to a website?

There are many potential security threats to a website. Some of the most common include:

  • Phishing
  • Distributed Denial-of-service (DDoS) attack
  • SQL Injection
  • Ransomware
  • Intellectual property loss
  • Cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks
  • Viruses and worms

But how to protect your website from all these attacks? Find the tips to tackle them in the section below.

How can HTML and CSS help?

Here are a few ways in which HTML and CSS can secure your website:

Protect your forms

Forms are the goldmine of information for hackers. These contain the names, addresses, email IDs, phone numbers, etc., of your clients. Therefore, it is necessary to protect them. Here are a few ways:

  • Use a random ID generator to create unique IDs instead of static IDs for each form. Unique IDs make it harder for hackers to find and exploit your forms. Whereas static IDs are easily exploitable.
  • Protect your forms using a CAPTCHA. It is a challenge-response test that can be used to ensure that only humans can submit a form. It can help prevent automated scripts from submitting malicious data to your forms.
  • You can also use a honeypot to protect your forms. A honeypot is hidden to users due to CSS but not to a spambot. When a form is submitted with the honeypot field filled in, it is automatically rejected as spam. To implement a honeypot, you need to add a hidden field to your form and give it a random name.

Be careful with external links

External links add value to your website content; however, cybercriminals can use them to conduct XSS attacks. An external link can be opened in a new tab by adding the target=”_blank” attribute to the anchor tag.

The link will open in a new window or tab when this attribute is present. If the link is not set to the HTTPS standard, the opened page can be malicious and may contain code that will attempt to steal information from the original page.

To protect against this, you can add the rel= “noopener noreferrer” attribute to your anchor tags. It will prevent the new page from accessing the original page.

Use appropriate security software

A secure website should have two things: an SSL certificate and HTTPS. In addition to other mechanisms, these two are the first signs users look at when visiting a site. Without them, most visitors will leave immediately.

Remember that users are wary of the dangers online. For instance, many download VPN apps to ensure that their data gets encrypted when exchanged online. A Virtual Private Network can be helpful for website owners as well. It is a universal tool for protecting data online and even combats specific cyber-attacks like DDoS.

Limit your pointer-events

The pointer events determine how each element of your website reacts to the mouse. When an element is set to “pointer-events: none,” it cannot become the target of mouse events. However, that doesn’t mean it can’t receive those events. The event will bubble up to the next parent element that can be targeted. That means any child elements with “pointer-events: none” can still be the target of mouse events.

An example of this is if there is a <div> with “pointer-events: none” and an anchor tag inside of it. Even though the <div> cannot be clicked, the anchor tag can still be clicked.

Thus, it is essential to add “pointer-events: none” to all child elements of the significant element that you want to be unclickable.

Use sandbox attribute

Even though widgets are a great way to increase the interactivity of your website, they are often taken from third parties. Therefore, it is crucial to control their activity, and a sandbox can help you with it. By default, all activities are blocked. Each type must be listed as an ‘allowed activity’ to allow a specific activity.

The “allow-forms” flag will enable form submission within the widget. The “allow-popups” flag will allow popups within the widget.

Share and Enjoy !

0 0