Email services are a staple in the world of online interchange. With billions of users on the service and millions more joining every day, email use keeps on growing. From large firms to individuals, almost everyone now adds to email traffic.
But, the email service comes with many security risks that plague users. To start with, email is likely the least secure means of online data exchange. And due to its security issues, it holds big risks for many corporate sectors. And the web development and upkeep arm are one of these.
Email Security Risks
One must remember that the email service was not designed with high security in mind. Of course, there have been many efforts to raise email security. But despite such stabs at a boost, it is still one of the weakest links in any corporate information system. The list of risks to which users are exposed is nearly endless.
To start with, there is the obvious risk of malware attacks. These include “worms”, viruses, and spyware.
Email services are also very open to other cyber risks. These include phishing attacks, spam mail, and social engineering.
How Does Email Security Affect Web Development?
Website development and upkeep is a very crucial part of any firm today. With the boom in online business affairs, firms need to make and maintain quality websites. Due to this need, there is the need for expert firms like Maxburst, a NY-based agency which provide specialist web development services. Firms also keep dedicated teams to take care of their web design needs.
But, the various teams that deal with this aspect of a firm need to coordinate and exchange data. Such data may include briefings on new web security plans, details of planned updates, etc.
As we have seen, email is the most common way in which the arms of a firm can exchange info. The result is that email security risks pose a regular danger to the workings of these arms. A security breach due to a hack could leak vital info. When this happens, the web development arm of a firm or business would be affected in the following ways:
1. Website Downtime
When hackers breach the email system, they may access secret info vital to running the firm’s website. Firms may deal with a lot of sensitive client data on their website. A breach of vital info on the handling of such data will put clients’ private info at risk. In such a case, firms may respond by taking down their website or email service for a short while.
A case in point is the total shutdown of the state department’s email system in November 2016. The Washington Post reports that the shutdown affected the department’s unclassified email traffic and access to some parts of its public website. It did not affect any of the classified systems, and as such, the damage was not too much. Yet, it still affected access to parts of the department’s website.
In an extreme case, classified systems might have been affected. And that might have led to the website being put out of action for a while.
2. Poorer Web Service Performance Due to Lack of Upgrades
Website design teams sometimes have to develop complex models to upgrade parts of a firm’s website. For instance, they may have a new model for upgrading the navigation or security of the website. Unfortunately, such models may take a while to come up with. And when menaced, they may take a while to replace.
As such, the upgrading of the firm’s website is halted. The result is that the website functions at a subpar level for longer than hoped for. Naturally, this brings down website performance.
3. Loss of Web Team Productivity
The job of a web development team is to take care of all web issues. These relate to the working, security, and design of a firm’s websites. Doing this becomes hard when the firm has to deal with constant breaches of crucial info. In addition, the time and effort that would have been spent maintaining and upgrading the web service would be spent patching up email security holes.
This means the team does not perform as needed on its main job. Thus, team output and website quality go down.
4. Total Halt to Website Development Process
One more way email security risks can affect website design is by bringing the process to a halt. This happens in extreme cases where core information about a developed website is leaked. This may render the website’s protocols open to easy access by the wrong persons. As a result, the development process may have to be halted until the issue is fixed.
A Word on Improving Email Security
With the above risks in mind, it should be clear that email security is a strong need. However, there are some ways to raise email security and reduce the risk of data breaches. These are some of the best ways:
- Use a strong password. The more opaque the password, the harder it will be to hack. Passwords with letters, numbers, and symbols are advised.
- Scan attachments before you open them. Malware and other digital threats are usually sent through email attachments. Scanning such before you will reduce the risk of opening the door to malware.
- Use two-factor security. Almost every email service today offers this option. With double security on email systems, hackers will have a harder time taking a peek.
- Change passwords often. Doing this will reduce the risk to email accounts to a good degree. Monthly changes are ideal.
- Log out of the email account after every session.
The landscape of cyber threats has reached a scary level. Emails are now a major source of such threats. Firms and people who rely on emails to exchange info are placed at high risk. Web development as an arm of such firms is not exempt from this.
With the info given here, users and web teams can know what risks they face and how to begin to tackle them.