What My Break-In can Teach us About Website Security

This post is out of date – please see our recent post on WordPress security:

Last week my car was broken into. They opened all the little hiding places in the dashboard… most likely on the hunt for cash. Your website is like a car where the little hooligans are checking the doors to see if it’s locked.

In my case, they didn’t break any windows or do any damage… they simply opened the door because I was an idiot and forgot to lock it.

In this website of yours, you have doors that should remain locked (your passwords). And you have windows that should be rolled up when you’re not there. Ha! Who remembers rolling windows up / down?? 

And sometimes we like to add fun things. In Canada, hockey flags get stuck in windows during hockey season – the WHOLE season long. The problem with this for the cars and your website is that tucking that flag holder in the top of your window leaves a tiny hole for the hooligans to slip in. Those fans’ flags leave their car at risk.

And you, my friend, leave your website at risk with every little plugin that you install. A plugin is a tiny little ‘fun thing’ that you add to your site. And most are okay and safe to use – but some are not. Do you know which is which?

If you know how to evaluate a plugin, you will likely install only the safe ones… have you seen those adorable eyelashes for the headlights?? As far as I know, those eyelashes don’t actually make it easier on bad guys to get in your vehicle.

These are the questions we ask ourselves when evaluating a plugin:

  1. Do we know the author – does he have a solid developer reputation?
  2. Will the plugin be updated regularly to patch vulnerabilities?
  3. Is there any service included?
  4. Is it absolutely necessary? And will it slow my loading time?

If you’d like to keep your cars parked nice and securely in a garage, contact me about the maintenance package! We take care of the vulnerabilities, check your plugins and set up a monitoring service.

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