Website injection by malicious code is a fairly common phenomenon in the web world. Indeed, several hackers use this approach to redirect users to a third-party page. This maneuver is often intended to either steal user information. Alternatively, they may wish to hack into computers or for any other reasons. Imagine you are a parent looking to enroll your child in a new school. You visit the school website, but suddenly you are redirected to another dubious site. What could have happened? We look at what it is to inject websites with malicious code, how it works and the measures to take.
How does website injection work?
The phenomenon of website injection by malicious code, also called "code injection", occurs when an attacker succeeds in inserting malicious code into the code of a web page. This can be achieved in several ways. However, the most common is the exploitation of vulnerabilities in the website. Indeed, many use unprotected forms, extensions or third-party codes. When the user visits the infected site, the malicious code is executed in the user's browser. This code can then perform different actions, like
- redirect the user to another (often malicious) website,
- steal sensitive information,
- or install malicious software on the user's computer.
There are several reasons why an attacker might want to inject malicious code into a website. Here are some examples :
malicious code can be designed to steal sensitive user information. Some of the information includes:
- login credentials,
- credit card numbers,
- or other personal information.
Distribution of malware
the attacker can use the malicious code to install malware on the user's computer. For example, they can install:
- or spyware.
Redirection to another site
As in the example above, the attacker can use the malicious code to redirect the user to another website. This site can be used to make
- spreading malware,
- or for other malicious reasons.
How to protect yourself as an Internet user?
As an Internet user, there are several steps you can take to protect yourself against the injection of malicious code:
Update your web browser
modern web browsers have built-in protections against many types of attacks, including malicious code injection. Make sure your browser is always up to date.
Use anti-virus software
good antivirus software can detect and block many types of malware, including those distributed by injecting malicious code.
Be careful what links you click on
Be vigilant when browsing the Internet. Do not click on dubious or unexpected links, and be especially careful when visiting unsecured websites.
Use a script blocker
Some web browsers allow you to install extensions that block the execution of potentially malicious scripts. This can help protect you from injecting malicious code.
How to protect yourself as a website owner?
If you are the owner of a website, it is essential to take measures to protect your site against the injection of malicious code. Here are a few tips :
Keep your site up to date
Make sure your content management system (CMS), plugins, and any other software you use on your site are always up to date. Many malicious code injections exploit vulnerabilities in outdated software.
Use strong passwords
Use strong, unique passwords for all of your accounts, including your website administrator account. This can make it harder for an attacker to take over your site.
Use a security scanner
There are many tools available that can scan your website for vulnerabilities or signs of an infection.
Work with security experts
If you are unsure how to secure your site, it may be helpful to work with a security consultant or specialist company. They can help you secure your site, monitor potential threats, and react quickly if your site is compromised. Website injection by malicious code is a serious problem, but by taking the right precautions, both Internet users and website owners can protect themselves against this type of attack. If you need assistance, contact us . Check out our podcast on YouTube talking about website security.