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The Knowledge Triangle
'Power can get you money. Money can get you power. Knowledge can get you both, if that's what you desire.'
Security, accessibility and privacy are crucial for any website to be trusted. Without these three essentials, a website will be hacked, sued or lose user trust.
As web technology and web applications outpace security, without knowledge eventually a website will fall prey to those with ulterior motives. The Knowledge Triangle is the interaction between research, education and innovation, which are the key drivers of a knowledge-based society. Research, education and innovation are also the key drivers for a high-ranking, W3C accessible, secure website.
The days of 'who you know' are well gone, and 'what you know' will be what matters as we move from the Industrial Revolution to the Internet Revolution.
The Internet does not care or recognise country borders, how much money you have or how influential or powerful a person is, in fact, it does not even care who you are at all. The Internet has no need for money or power, it simply takes code instructions sent and processes them. No questions asked!
To be competitive on the Internet a website must rank highly on search engines otherwise it will not attract traffic. Understanding (research) how the web works, knowledge of W3C and code (education) and Information Architecture (innovation) are the key factors for a successful website.
If all the above is implemented any website will successfully be able to achieve all the following;
Time to get smart, get secure or get hacked
Internet security concerns are increasing rapidly due
to a massive increase in website attacks, notably the increase in the sophistication, complexity and techniques that hackers now use to attack websites.
A hacker only has to find one vulnerable entry point, but a website has to block all vulnerable entry points. If not a serious breach can and does happen (regularly). Once a serious breach has occurred it can result in a loss of sensitive data and/or customers losing trust in a website.
The current approach is 'sophisticated security' is required to repel 'sophisticated attacks', leading into an endless tunnel of 'problem' vs 'patch' mentality. This is about as logical as closing the gate after the horse has bolted. Finding the right balance between security and interactivity will probably always be evolving rather than ever being solved.
The increased use of web applications, cloud computing and HTML5 are only adding fuel to this fire. Complexity is a hacker's best friend, and as complexity and security solutions becoming more complex, hackers are finding new innovative ways to circumvent a websites security. As long as this patch to fix the problem mentality continues, more websites will become victims to cyberattacks.
100% online security is a myth! The only form of defence is to have a concise contingency recovery plan and know the structure of your website well. Keep a copy of your website offline on a computer or a back up drive that is disconnected from the Internet. And only use dynamic code and web applications when absolutely necessary (e.g. e-commerce and web forms), and back up database files regularly.
Last of all, avoid cloud computing and the over use of web applications and HTML5, as you would the Bubonic plague.
'Never trust any Cloud service with sensitive information, it's inherently dangerous.'
Time to get W3C accessible or risk getting sued
Websites designed and built to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), will not only be accessible to people with disabilities, they will deliver content that is viewable and understandable to all online traffic, and web ready devices, increasing a websites market share.
W3C also ensures that a website obtains excellent search engine optimization, and avoids the risk of being sued for inaccessibility to people with disability, which could be financially crippling.
Web Designers do not intentionally sets out to create an inaccessible website. After all, the point of having a website is to reach as many people as possible, and most web designers care about search engine optimization. But for many web designers the idea of creating an accessible website is incredibly overwhelming.