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Web Hosting & Security

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An Easy-to-Understand Primer to Web Hosting and Security

We’d like to think of web hosting as online real estate– space on the internet upon which you can build your business website (or websites) and can serve as your launchpad for anything you’d like to do online.

You can be the next multinational tech powerhouse, an up-and-coming new player in the ecommerce space, or a neighborhood organic food store– if you want an online presence, it all starts with having web hosting.

Jump to a sector!

In the last 30 years, LOJO has built more than 1000 websites for all sorts of businesses and all sorts of clients. We’ve seen how websites have evolved in terms of tech, look, feel, and function. 

And while each and every one of those projects were unique, the core elements of how to set up a website (pretty much) remain the same every single time 

If you’re a business owner looking to build your first website and is confused by all the tech jargon that goes along with that process, then this guide is for you. 

We’ll go through the basics of how domain registration and website hosting work and then we’ll discuss what the various web hosting package types mean and the pros and cons of each, and hopefully by the end you’ll have a better understanding of how to choose the right one for your situation.

I

Web Hosting Basics

Let’s start with the basics. Whenever you’re about to build a website– any website– you’ll be needing two things: a domain and hosting.

There are a lot of companies out there selling domains as well as hosting packages. And you get all kinds of web hosting companies: some are big, mass-market companies providing cheap bundled packages, and some are smaller companies providing a higher level of customer experience or catering to a particular market segment.

There are even companies that can give you hosting and a domain for free. Free might be great if you’re putting up a site for one of your hobbies, but as a business owner, you know there’s no such thing as a free lunch.

What is Domain Registration?

If hosting is the online parcel of land on which you’ll be building your website, then the domain is sort of like having the set of master keys– only you can build, update, or edit the website on your little corner of the internet, or set up mailboxes to send and receive email, and so on.

Domain registration is the act of reserving and securing a domain name for your business or one of your brands.  

When you register a domain, you typically do so through a domain name registrar, an ICANN or national ccTLD-accredited company that has the authority to register domain names. Companies like these help you get a domain name that has an extension like .com, .org, .net, .info, .and so on.

Keep in mind that a lot of companies put a great deal of thought into what sort of domain name to purchase, mainly for purposes of branding or SEO. Ideally, you’ll want a domain name that has your brand name in there, or perhaps your top search keyword. You’ll also want it to be not so long, easy to read, easy to make sense, and easy to remember.

Whenever you purchase a domain name from a domain name registrar (and many web hosting companies do provide this service), you will typically be given access to DNS settings– or your domain name system settings. Each domain name you purchase will have its own DNS settings.

Now, when you purchase web hosting services from a web hosting provider, they’ll also give you simple instructions on how you should set up your domain name’s DNS settings so that it points to your hosting company’s DNS servers.

Doing so “translates” or “maps” your domain into an IP address– sort of like giving your domain name its own phone number, but it’s an entirely different system of numbers altogether. 

Essentially, when anyone fires up a browser and then types in your domain name, it accesses your DNS servers where your domain name is matched to your IP address, and that guest can now see your site.

You can register for as many domain names as you like, but remember that you’ll have to build your website as well. It’s common for businesses (and entrepreneurs) to snatch up domain names they feel they can use later for an upcoming campaign or a brand under development.

What is Web Hosting?

Web hosting allows you, as a business owner, to have access to tools and services that will help you build your new website from the ground up, and be published on the internet for all the world to see.

Your website is thus hosted– or stored– on specially-configured computers called servers. A domain (which you have purchased for this purpose) is required as well so your customers can have an address with which to access your website.

What Should I Consider When Getting a Hosting Package?

With a plethora of web hosting companies out there, each with their own promos and packages, here are a few questions to help you figure out what sort of hosting packages you should be getting for your business:

1. How many websites do you plan on building and maintaining?

Some companies might be fine with just one business website. Others might want to have a site for a particular product line, marketing campaign, or other brands in development.

So do you want to create just one website or do you have plans of building even more websites in the immediate future? And if you have plans of having more sites, are we looking at two or three more, or does it mean maybe 10 or 20 more sites? 

2. How do you plan to build your websites?

WordPress is still, by far, the most popular option when it comes to building a business website. But maybe you’ll want a site geared more towards ecommerce (so you might consider using Shopify or Magento instead), or you might have a more personal preference towards other content management systems like Joomla or Drupal.

Many web hosting companies have website builders to help you get set up quickly. Still, we’ve seen a good number of clients who’d prefer to build their own sites from scratch using HTML or some other higher-level coding using PHP or JavaScript.

3. How much traffic are you anticipating?

Naturally, if your site is just starting out, you’re not going to expect a lot of traffic. Even more established sites can have a relatively small number of people coming through at any given time.

Of course that can all change once you’ve decided to be more active with your digital marketing and content development. After all, the main goal of any effective SEO, PPC, email marketing, social media, online PR, and content marketing campaign is to bring in a steady stream of new leads to your site.

In those cases when you start consistently bringing in a high level of traffic, your web hosting options are likely gonna change– more traffic means your site will be needing more bandwidth to accommodate more folks viewing your site.

So it’s perfectly fine to start off with a cheaper, more basic web hosting package and then just consider upgrading further down the road when you start bringing in more traffic

Types of Web Hosting Packages

Web hosting packages come bundled with a wealth of features, some of which you’ll most likely find more useful than others. You’ll find the basics covered, so you’ll find various simple website builders, online store builders, mailing list managers, and different types of customer support options.

Generally, most hosting companies have three paid-for tiers of hosting packages, corresponding to shared hosting, VPS hosting, and dedicated hosting.

When it comes to hosting packages, go ahead and pick one out that best suits your needs and budget. Pricier packages typically correspond to higher demands in terms of bandwidth and server resources. It’s perfectly fine to start out with the lowest tier packages, as you can easily upgrade when you feel ready to take your site to the next level. 

Let’s have a look at the options that are going to be available to you on most of the large web hosting companies you’re likely to find online.  Chances are, you’re gonna be choosing from one of these types of packages:

  • Shared Hosting
  • Reseller Hosting
  • A Virtual Private Server
  • Dedicated Hosting
  • Cloud Hosting
  • Managed WordPress Hosting

Shared Hosting

Most small businesses, professionals, startups, and other organizations will typically start out with shared hosting packages– they’re a lot cheaper, it’s easier for you to get started, and these big hosting companies constantly have promotions for new customers.

In a shared hosting service, the main downside is that as the name suggests: you’re sharing server space with roomies and neighbors, i.e. other sites and web hosting accounts. This setup keeps costs down and is ideal for smaller websites or brands just starting out– those that don’t use a lot of bandwidth resources.

In a shared hosting setup, however, you might end up having a bad neighbor. Specifically, one who might not be as security-conscious as you are, so they might have malware, a bit of bad code, or extraneous functions that use up way too much bandwidth and server resources.

So that’s the tradeoff: when more shared hosting accounts are on the hosting server, there’s a chance your site might load slower because of the other sites in there with you. (And everyone’s sites all load a lot slower!)

Still, shared hosting is great because it keeps things accessible for just about anyone. That said, go ahead and upgrade your hosting plan once you’re ready to take your site to the next level.

Reseller Hosting

A good number of the larger web hosting companies offer reseller hosting. In this scenario, you can sell the hosting plans yourself, which might come in handy if you’re creating sites for other clients.

When you do the reselling yourself, note that you’re peddling shared hosting accounts. Of course, you don’t need to create websites specifically; you could literally just set up hosting accounts and allow your customers free reign over their own respective accounts.

VPS Hosting or Virtual Private Server Hosting

A step above shared hosting is VPS hosting– virtual private server hosting. With VPS hosting, you’re getting resources that act like you have your own hosting server. 

With a VPS setup, you can scale more easily and draw on additional resources as and when you need them.  

Now it’s likely you’re still sharing server space with others, but in this case, you don’t have to worry about other websites interfering with your site’s performance, as you might have been allotted a greater chunk of dedicated resources to run your website.

So rather than being restricted by the limitations of a physical server, your site can draw from a pool of processing power, memory and storage, depending on your requirements.

Also, you’ll be given root access to do any high-level technical or IT stuff you might need to do. Simply put, you’re gonna have more options with a VPS server versus a shared hosting server.

The downside is that VPS hosting is certainly going to cost you more. Also, you might need to upgrade further if you do start to get more traffic.

Dedicated Hosting

A step above VPS hosting is dedicated hosting. With this hosting plan, you actually get a physical web server that’s pretty much all yours. Your site now has significantly faster performance, with plenty of room to grow. 

Dedicated hosting makes good sense if you want your own server platform for your business website. This way, you don’t have to worry about other businesses on a shared server impacting your online business if they have any issues, especially those that affect site speed, security, and uptime..

While dedicated servers are not as expensive as they once were, available options can still be rather costly, setting you back upwards of $75 per month. Of course, the assumption is that your high-traffic website is also bringing in big business for you, so these overhead costs are quite justifiable. 

Some packages, however, might leave the responsibility of server maintenance to you. And while some clients might actually prefer it this way, it’s not typically always the case.

Cloud Hosting

With cloud hosting, instead of your site being hosted on a physical computer sitting in an air-conditioned data center somewhere, it is instead hosted on the cloud.

As a popular option these days, one of the biggest advantages of a cloud hosting setup is that you have redundancy– your site loads faster, you can scale your site better, and if for some reason traffic surges start to happen you know your site’s not gonna crash as easily. (At least, not as if you were on a shared server that only had a specific amount of RAM or memory.)

The main downside is that cloud hosting tends to cost a little more, and you might not get the same access that you would if you had a dedicated server.

Managed WordPress Hosting

As WordPress continues to be a popular option for many business owners, a good number of web hosting providers have decided to offer managed WordPress hosting, a web hosting setup specifically optimized for the sites that run on that particular CMS.

Managed WordPress hosting.is sort of like a concierge service where all technical aspects of running WordPress is managed for you, so you end up having a completely hassle-free experience. This way, you can focus on running your business and doing what you are good at.

Meanwhile, your web hosting company takes care of just about everything that keeps your WordPress site purring like a kitten: regular WordPress updates, tweaks for security and speed, periodic backups, and so on.

Managed WordPress hosting is a bit pricey, with packages costing upwards of about $30-40 per month, but you do get premium support. Knowing you have a crack team of WordPress experts on your side goes a long way towards setting your mind at ease for when you encounter any technical issues down the road. 

A Note on Web Hosting Packages

Small businesses and other brands just starting out will typically opt for a shared service as these have significantly lower costs. Keep in mind, however, that your business will be sharing its server with several other enterprises. 

Once you’re already bringing in a considerable amount of traffic (and business) through your website, you can always move up to a virtual private network (VPS) or dedicated server if needed.

No matter which web hosting company you might decide to sign up with, take the time to review your service level agreement (SLA). You’ll want to pay close attention to:

  • No matter which web hosting company you might decide to sign up with, take the time to review your service level agreement (SLA). You’ll want to pay close attention to
  • Any additional costs such as maintenance or other add-ons and extras not covered in your hosting packages
  • Any additional costs you might incur when you decide to switch hosting companies

Definitely worth considering is cloud hosting– it’s a great alternative to more traditional hosting options (i.e. those using physical servers). With larger tech companies putting in more resources into further developing cloud technology, we can only expect prices to go down, making this hosting option even more accessible in the near future.

The power of cloud hosting is the flexibility it offers. In effect your business can buy just the space and hosting services it needs now and expand at anytime with no disruption to business.

What’s Wrong with Free Hosting?

OK, we admit we do get this question more frequently than we’d like. After all, most businesses aren’t exactly flush with cash especially in the startup phases. 

So what’s wrong with free web hosting?

Free web hosting services and site builders are immensely popular, and should be perfectly fine if you’re running a personal website, learning to do a bit of coding, or need an outlet for one of your hobbies.

And, indeed, you can set up a perfectly functional, perfectly great-looking website on any of these free hosting providers or free website builders despite the many limitations that come with such an account. 

It’s just that we feel that, for business owners, free hosting services are fraught with potential issues that make it hard to recommend them:

  • Limitations on disk space
  • Limitations on bandwidth
  • You won't receive an SSL certificate. This is a strongly preferred security condition in order to run a professional business website.
  • You won't have regular backups
  • Some will even shut down your website for one hour a day
  • Limitations on how you can further customize your site
  • Limitations on how you can further extend the functionality of your site
  • Limitations on how you can advertise or monetize on your site (should you decide to go this route)
  • You might be able to upgrade later, but at costs much greater than other providers
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Web Hosting with LOJO

Why Should I Choose LOJO's Hosting Packages?

It’s a fair question we get all the time. After all, bigger companies like GoDaddy, HostGator, Bluehost, and others do offer very low-cost web hosting packages.

Right off the bat, we’re telling you that we’re catering to a very specific market segment (in this case, business owners who don’t have a lot of free time on their hands). We also offer a higher level of service, a higher commitment to quality, as well as our own personal expertise.   

Here are five good reasons why you might want to go with LOJO’s web hosting services rather than the other mass-market web hosting solutions out there:

1. Server Load 

Remember how we’d like to describe web hosting as online real estate? To take the analogy even further, depending on who you choose as a web hosting provider, your site might end up in a web hosting server with hundreds or thousands of other websites all crammed in there.

Server load is a key factor to consider when a website is hosted in a shared environment if someone is not paying for a dedicated server. 

More sites in a server entails greater server load. This means all the websites in a particular hosting server draw from the same pool of server resources– bandwidth, processor power, memory and so forth. 

At LOJO, we do not overload our servers with thousands of websites like many of the low-cost hosting companies. This benefits our clients’ websites greatly as they are able to have a significantly larger portion of committed server resources to their website.

2. Technology


We believe cloud hosting is the way to go here at LOJO. 

To ensure the highest levels of performance and reliability, we always have on hand ample disk space, memory, and processor speeds so that our clients can receive the fastest speeds possible when serving their websites to the public. 

3. Security

In addition to our top-of-the-line security protocols in place, both on the server level and on the individual website level, we do not allow just any website to be hosted in our cloud space.

Simply put, we turn away the types of websites that are not in alignment with attracting the good kind of traffic. 

We know– we’re picky. But by being selective when it comes to our clientele, our server reputations remain clean which allows us to stay off of blacklists and not slow down Or otherwise negatively impact our clients’ businesses.

4. Regular backups

In the unlikely event of a catastrophic failure of your site, a major security breach, or some other untoward incident, know that we do regular weekly backups of your site here at LOJO.

We do not charge extra for our weekly back-ups. All back-ups are stored off-site, separate from our servers.

It’s for your peace of mind more than anything else. Weekly back-ups are taken throughout the month in the event something goes amiss, so you have the ability to restore your site and get back up and running as soon as possible whenever you need it.

5. Personal service from top-down

You can think of LOJO as a five-star concierge when it comes to ensuring that your site is up and running like a well-oiled machine all the time.

From the initial conversation onward, you can always count on speaking to the same team members for any assistance you might need with your site. 

It’s the same team that has access to administrative functions on your account, so we can facilitate any assistance when it comes to tasks like setting up emails, changing passwords, adjusting custom DNS settings, updating website files, or other tasks.

Let's Go With LOJO

Interested in signing up for web hosting services with LOJO?

As far as customer satisfaction goes, we have over 20 years of comprehensive experience as a hosting provider with a near-perfect retention rate.

Don’t take our word for it– you can go through some of these awesome reviews and high praises from our web hosting customers.

Set up an appointment with our team at LOJO today so we can talk about your web hosting requirements (and anything else you might need for your business website).

LOJO Web Hosting Packages

Basic Web Hosting

  • 2,500 MB Disk Space
  • 10,000 MB Bandwidth
  • 20 POP3 Accounts
  • 1 Add-on/Parked Domains
  • Anonymous FTP

$15

PER MONTH

$165 PER YEAR

Advanced Web Hosting

  • 5,000 MB Disk Space
  • 30,000 MB Bandwidth
  • 100 POP3 Accounts
  • 3 Add-on/Parked Domains
  • Anonymous FTP

$25

PER MONTH

$275 PER YEAR

Pro Web Hosting

  • 10,000 MB Disk Space
  • 60,000 MB Bandwidth
  • 250 POP3 Accounts
  • 5 Add-on/Parked Domains
  • Anonymous FTP

$50

PER MONTH

$550 PER YEAR

Enterprise Web Hosting

  • 20,000 MB Disk Space
  • Unlimited Bandwidth
  • 500 POP3 Accounts
  • 8 Add-on/Parked Domains
  • Anonymous FTP

$100

PER MONTH

$1,100 PER YEAR

LOJO’s Web Hosting Package Inclusions & Other Features

Setup And Support

  • No setup fees
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee
  • Risk-free for 30 days
  • Instant backups
  • Online support tickets

Email Features

  • Web mail
  • Email alias
  • Auto resposnders
  • Catch-alls
  • Spam assassin

Supported Features

  • CGI scripts
  • PHP support
  • Perl
  • Python
  • Server-side includes
  • Cron jobs
  • Frontpage extensions
  • Curl
  • GD library
  • Image Magick
  • Streaming audio/video

Control Panel Features

  • Latest cPanel
  • Hotlink protection
  • Leech protection
  • IP deny manager
  • Custom error pages
  • Redirect URL
  • Web file manager
  • Passworded directories
  • Index manager
  • Apache handlers
  • Instant chat room
  • Instant bulletin board
  • Instant guestbook
  • Instant counter
  • Instant form mailer

Control Panel Features

  • AWStats
  • Webalizer stats
  • Analog stats
  • Subdomain stats
  • Raw access logs
  • Error logs
  • Raw log manager
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LOJO’s Web Security Services

One of the more common issues associated with hosting is security.

Websites built on an open-source platform (such as WordPress) are meant to be updated as newer versions become available. These updates can provide not just improved features and functionality, but improved security as well. .

 

In our experience managing websites for clients of all kinds, we’ve noticed that malware is a fairly common problem for a lot of websites. Most malware-related security issues arise due to a bit of malicious code sneakily inserted into website files, as online vandals exploit gaps left by  outdated WordPress versions and plugins.

 

Once a site is infected, it might not display or function properly, or it may even draw on way too many server resources causing the whole site (or server) to go down. Left unresolved, these issues persist and most likely increase in severity. 

 

Infections also mean a website host may require the site to be suspended or locked to prevent any negative effects to the host server itself.

 

Malware infection is not always the cause of website glitches. Deprecated code may cause compatibility issues with other forms of code and cause these glitches to arise. Sometimes, a plugin can also cause site instability, as can human error when someone from your team is tinkering with the file manager and accidentally moves (or deletes!) essential directories.

To ensure your site’s smooth operation, security, and performance, we recommend implementing routine audits as well as regularly scheduled maintenance and updates.

We offer several solutions to these website update and security issues. We offer malware

infection clean up service. A one time WordPress update package. An ongoing security firewall

service. And lastly a worry free full service update and security package.

Malware Infection Cleanup - Package

Malware Cleanup

FROM

$125 - $375

In the event of infection, we can clean up the website code and programing and remove all malware. This type of repair task is billed in 15 minute increments (1 hour minimum). 

This type of work can take anywhere from 1 hour to 3 hours depending on how bad the infection is. If this action is requested LOJO would bill for the one hour’s worth of time and then keep track of any additional time required and invoice the client upon completion as needed. 

Once completely clean, we stand behind the work for 30 days in the event of repeat situation. Unfortunately, without doing a system update, this still can leave you vulnerable.

WordPress Update - Package

1 Time | WordPress Website Update Package

$375

Package includes a one-time WordPress version and plug-in update:

  • Update WordPress to the most current version.
  • This update also includes all other applicable plug-ins to be updated to the most current version available.
  • Backup live website & website database.
  • Check for compatibility issues that may occur during an update
  • Update WP and plug-ins on the development server.
  • Repair database if needed on development server.
  • Final test of the update on development server.
  • Push development server updates to live server.
  • Test updates on live server.

30 day warranty period on the update and coding.

Maximum of 2.5 hours of development as needed.

Note: Some plugins may be custom and require additional time and cost beyond what is included in the package. In addition, some plugins or programs may not be compatible with website programming and or the most current version of WP requiring abandonment, modification and or additional programming, which also may require additional charges.

Website Security - Plan

Firewall and Monitoring

$50/month

(or Billed Annually $550)

Website Security Firewall and Monitoring Software

The provided firewall provides a comprehensive security solution for your new website. It is comprised of a few core platforms designed to provide a holistic end-to-end security solution.

Monitoring Platform

The monitoring platform is a remote and local continuous scanning engine, providing near-real time visibility into the security state of a website. It’s designed to detect multiple Indicators of Compromise (IoC), to include, but not limited to:

  • Malware Distribution
  • Blacklisting Incidents
  • SEO Spam
  • Phishing Lure Pages
  • Whois Changes
  • DNS Changes
  • SSL Certificates

Protection Platform

The protection platform is a next-generation application firewall. All attacks are mitigated at the software layer, alleviating any potential issues on the host network and servers; filtering and stripping all malicious requests, and passing all benign traffic to the website.

The following are threats the protection platform defends against, but are not limited to:

  • Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Attacks
  • Software Vulnerability Exploitation Attacks and Attempts (i.e., SQLi, XSS, RFI / LFI, and other similar events)
  • Protection against the OWASP Top 10 (and more)
  • Access Control Attacks (i.e., Brute Force attempts)

Note: Software licenses are for 12 months and are set for automatic renewal unless otherwise specified. $50 (a month) reflects pricing of annual billing or ACH monthly draft. Drafts are made on the 10th of each month.

Website Complete Worry-Free Plans

WordPress
Updates, Security Firewall, Monitoring and Response

$150/month

12 Month Program

This program includes monthly WordPress & plug-in updates* as provided in the standard WordPress update package. The program also offers advanced security configurations with a professionally licensed firewall security software. 

Software firewall installation and configuration are included within the program. Software licenses are one-year licenses and are for the length of program services. All license fees are included in the monthly service cost.

This package additionally includes back-ups and restoration of the website if problems should ever occur, for complete peace of mind.

* Some plugins may be custom and require additional time and cost beyond what is included in the program. In addition, some plugins or programs may not be compatible with website programming and or the most current version of WP requiring abandonment, modification and or additional programing, which also may require additional charges.

Note: This program is specific to WordPress websites and a LOJO Hosting plan is recommended.

E-Commerce Updates, Security Firewall, Monitoring and Response

$250/month

12 Month Program

This program is set up for specifically for e-commerce websites. By routinely updating the sites platform and updating and testing core functionality plugins*, this plan insures the life blood of your business wont skip a beat.

This program also offers advanced security configurations with a professionally licensed firewall security software. 

This package additionally includes back-ups and restoration of the website if problems should ever occur, for complete peace of mind.

* Some plugins may be custom and require additional time and cost beyond what is included in the program. In addition, some plugins or programs may not be compatible with website programming and or the most current version of WP requiring abandonment, modification and or additional programing, which also may require additional charges.

Note: This program is specific to e-commerce websites and a LOJO Hosting plan is recommended.

IV

Hosted Exchange

If regular POP email is not working out for you, LOJO partners with AppRiver to bring you the most reliable Hosted Exchange solutions in the market. LOJO’s Hosted Exchange service is the easy, effective and affordable option for businesses that need reliable email service. For the same price AppRiver charges directly, LOJO sets up and manages the relationship on your behalf.

Keep your inbox clean with Hosted Exchange. 99% of spam and viruses are blocked with the help of SecureTide, keeping your inbox clean and your network safe. SecureTide is one of the many features are included when you sign up with Hosted exchange Email.

For a low monthly, per mailbox fee, LOJO gives you unlimited storage, the ability to easily add and remove users or services from your account, and the ability to synchronize your phones and mobile devices. We also offer Outlook Web Access (OWA) if you need to access your email from any computer or device connected to the Internet. Even better, Hosted Exchange service from AppRiver and LOJO is backed with our phenomenal support 24×7. If you’re still not convinced, give LOJO a call and we can chat more about the great benefits of Hosted Exchange Email.

Who should go with secure hosted exchange services from LOJO? Secure Hosted Exchange with LOJO is email made easy for businesses who want reliable messaging and mobile device synchronization and who don’t want the expense and hassle of managing it themselves. Here are some of the features and benefits of Hosted Exchange Email.

  • Connection Type: MAPI
  • Device Synchronized
  • Calendar Sharing
  • Mailbox Storage: Unlimited
  • 30-Day Deleted Item Retention
  • Scheduling Assistant
  • Outlook 2013 License
  • Customer Portal
  • ActiveSync
  • Anti-spam and Virus Protection