While these two facets of the internet may rarely be mentioned together, cybersecurity does, indeed, play a vital role in search engine optimization. In a digital marketing campaign, importance and priorities are often placed on tasks such as user engagement, web development, SEO, etc., but one aspect that is often overlooked is that of cybersecurity. Overlooking the importance of cybersecurity could be hurting your search engine optimization campaign significantly. However, in order to understand this, it’s important to first define what is a website hack.
What Is A Website Hack?
Simply put, a website hack refers to obtaining access to a website or a network without the permission of the website owner and/or the network owner. Website hacks are usually performed with the objective of stealing sensitive information from a website, or as a means to drive traffic from a legitimate source to a hacker’s website, which, in essence, means that the hacker may also be stealing your traffic. But that’s not all.
Why Is This Bad?
You have to consider that SEO is expensive because it takes time and effort to develop. Even if you were (for some reason), fine with the fact that someone is reaping the benefits of your efforts, the danger here is that these hackers could also embed spammy links within your content.
The use of link spamming has long been deemed as a black hat SEO technique. If Google identifies that you have been using black hat SEO it can not only hurt your search engine result rankings, it could even cause your website to become deindexed. Having your website deindexed basically means that no one will be able to find it, which is the stuff of nightmares for both the website owner and the SEO specialist handling that website.
Worse Problems Ahead
As bad as getting your website deindexed is, there are other problems that you might need to face if your website is compromised. Because the hacker has control of your website, they may also have access to sensitive information stored within your website. This is especially dangerous if you run an eCommerce website.
The sensitive information of your client base might also be compromised. Worse still, if your company website is compromised, you could risk having your trade secrets stolen. If your website gets deindexed, you might be better off simply building a new website from scratch. If sensitive information is stolen, this could potentially ruin not only the trust of your customers in your business but your entire business if your trade secrets are stolen.
The Bottom Line
Cybersecurity plays a vital role in almost all our dealings on the internet. As technology advances, so do the means that criminals use to harm others. Cybersecurity is all about prevention, and prevention means that besides the necessary security measures, you are also being vigilant with well-established habits that ensure you don’t leave any holes in your security that can be exploited by hackers.