WordPress (and others) is Awesome…until it’s hacked—it’s Preventable; I Promise!

by | Oct 28, 2016 | Website Management, Websites |

I love WordPress. But, like any other popular platform on the web, it’s got it’s challenges.  The majority of my website clients are on WordPress. However, I’m getting a lot of calls from current clients – and an increasing number of new ones. They haven’t touched their site since their last web upgrade and . . .

They. Get. Hacked!

WordPress seems to be the platform of choice for most people these days and I’m not going to say I’m sorry about that. It is powerful, extremely customizable and once the site is set up, relatively easy for the lay user to manage and update.
sidebarBut, out of the blue, a client I haven’t heard from for months calls me in a panic: “There’s weird ads flashing on my site” or “I’ve got strange links in my header” or “My slideshow is no longer working correctly” or…well you get the drift!

WordPress sites can be vulnerable, after all they’re open source, meaning that anyone can work on any application, widget, plugin (see sidebar) and/or theme, but, worse, it means that folks can get into your site through many back doors. I did a quick search on Google using the search term “WordPress hacking statistics” and got nearly 700,000 results, the top article “Statistics Show Why WordPress is a Popular Hacking Target” from WP White Security, lists some very scary stats. I’ve snagged a screenshot of the results of an Alexa poll from the article to show you.

stats

As you can see from the statistics, the biggest reason that WordPress sites are being hacked is because they are not being updated.
stale-vs-freshNow, I have been preaching for as long as I’ve been in this business that the key to success on a website is adding fresh content regularly. I think all of us know by now that a stale website is rarely visited. Part of site management is updating content. If main content is not going to change much over time, I recommend to clients that they set up and write a blog at least once a week. This not only keeps the site fresh, but, because you’re visiting the site to upload a blog, you (or your web master) will see any needed updates. Not only is it good practice to update content, it is CRITICAL to update the core, theme and plugins regularly. Let me tell you from personal experience, it’s a long and ugly process cleaning up a site.

However, I suspect that you are way too busy running your business, or non-profit or your life to have time to get into the back end of your WordPress website and update it. Updates happen as often as hackers find a way into sites, which can mean more than once a month. Copper Moon Media offers a low cost maintenance plan that includes checking for and performing updates as well as inserting content that you may not have time to do. It’s not only good for business, it’s also the best way to avoid the agony and lost time that come from being hacked.

Contact us (here or through the widget at the right) for more information. Initial consultations are free; we’ll review your site and discuss your maintenance needs.