Preventing Cross-Site Scripting (XSS)

What is it?

Cross-Site Scripting, or XSS, is a type of attack used by hackers to control the content of your web pages. Hackers will insert a piece of code into your site, usually through an input field such as a search box, user ID, or Name/Address box. If your website is vulnerable to this type of attack, the hacker can control the content of your page, including the user's cookies or session variables.

What is the impact?

Hackers use this type of attack to trick your visitors into providing personal data. Since visitors believe they are providing this information to your site, they are likely to provide sensitive information to hackers, since they trust your business. Hackers use information collected, such as user names, passwords, credit card information, etc. to carry out identity theft and other criminal activities.

What can I do about it?

Make sure any applications you use are kept up-to-date and limit the use of third-party plug-in's where possible as they can be a source of many issues and may be updated less frequently or created by unscrupulous publishers. Use a website scanning service that features XSS scripting scans, such as SiteLock Fix. If you are writing your own code, be sure to validate your input fields for special characters and ensure that the settings for your code are frequently updated and hardened for security. You can also take advantage of SiteLock's Expert Services team to correct any issues we identify in our scans.