After a series of recent hacking attacks against corporate and federal websites, the US government has spun out a plan to protect internet sites from online attacks.

The Homeland Security department will help the businesses that are facing a growing threat of cyber attack and avoid security issues that allow hackers to get into websites.

The new program, developed by the Mitre Corp., was taken up much before the hacking attacks on CIA and Senate were reported.

Alan Paller, director of research at computer security institute SANS, said small business owners usually hire a firm to build a website and are not aware of the hacking potential in the software installed.

He said the information, which has been compiled on a special website that the public can view, will tell people what to look for in setting up a secure website and how to judge potential programming errors.

The institute will set up a scorecard for website-building companies to easily monitor their performance.

The program targets the computer programmers and tech professionals who write code and develop software to let them know about some crucial software weaknesses and the ways to fix them.