Is Your Website Properly Maintained?

How to maintain website

Posted on March 22, 2012

Even if you don’t fully understand their function, you may have heard of the concepts…

 “SEO”, ” Web Optimization”, ” Social Media link-backs”, ”Adwords”, ”blogging”, etc.,…

 Website maintenance is much more than leveraging flashy marketing tactics.  My Internet Scout (MIS) breaks up the concept of Website Maintenance and separates them into two distinct areas:

  • Operational Maintenance; and, Promotional Maintenance

Of these two forms of maintenance, although both are important, Operational Maintenance is rarely discussed during the planning and roll-out of a website.  Most website agencies only address the promotional side of website maintenance.

 

Operational Maintenance

Most businesses understand the importance of virus protection and Windows security updates.  They also understand why, at certain times, it’s important to upgrade their PC applications and operating systems.  However, ‘under-the-hood’ maintenance of a website isn’t normally on a company’s to-do list.  We, at My Internet Scout, believe operational maintenance should be held as one of the top aspects of preserving your website’s integrity and your business’ online reputation.

In January of 2012, SophosLabs, a global leader in data security, publicly acknowledged an abrupt sea-change in how Internet crime is undertaken.  Sophos mentioned four ominous trends on the Internet that has caught the security industry off-guard…

  • The #1 way to catch a computer virus now is just by visiting a website, a malicious technique known as a ‘Drive-by’ download.
  • Over 30,000 websites are breached DAILY  by organized cyber-criminals.
  • Upon being breached, these legitimate sites are injected with software turning them into ‘zombie’ websites.  These infected sites are then instructed to spread malware to other legitimate website servers and infect client-side PCs and laptops.
  • Cyber-criminals originate their attacks through the use of a black-market server-based software that’s come to be known as the “Blackhole Exploit Kit”.  In 2011, Blackhole and its variants became and continue to be the top method of distributing malware with Drive-by techniques.   What makes Blackhole insidious is its inherent ability to obfuscate detection by anti-virus software.

Would a Website Breach Affect Your Revenue?
…Your Reputation?

 

The following video, produced by Sophos security, explains the technical workings of the malware eco-system on the web.

 

Build a Security Foundation!

Starting at the time of the website installation, MIS initiates a solid web server and website security foundation.  We employ Google’s best practices for web security and we apply essential web security software to help prevent security breaches.  And with our monthly maintenance program, MIS performs routine upgrades and updates to deter website attacks and infiltration.   Whenever there is an attack attempt on a customer site, our security software sends notification to our team and immediately blocks the questionable IP address.

  •  Most website admins are unaware the last time their website was attacked.
  • 99.9% of website owners don’t log attack attempts or regular user logins.
  • 80% of administrators who manage infected websites have no idea their website is infected.
  • Almost every website will face an attack this year.   Is your website prepared?

A False Sense of Security

Ask most small business owners about website updates and tune-ups, and they’ll say something like the following,

 “My Hosting Company takes care of it…”

Yes, it’s true that hosting companies many times perform automatic upgrades on hardware and some core software, like PHP and MySQL.  But they typically won’t touch the website engine software (or CMS) layer that’s running a website.  Hosting companies leave that upgrade task to the website’s administrator.  Even hosting service companies like Automattic, the owner of the WordPress.com service, don’t protect against brute force attacks.  A handful of sample inquiries with AVG’s website scanner shows several websites hosted by Automattic (the owner of WordPress.com; not to be confused with the self-hosted WordPress engine) to be infected with Blackhole.  The lesson:   protect your website and protect your business’ reputation!

If your company is looking for website maintenance, contact us for a free consultation at (408)454-8522.   We are a Silicon Valley-based company.  Our office hours are Monday through Friday, 9am to 5pm Pacific Time.

Written by Peter La Fond

Having lived most of his life in Northern California, Peter consults for organizations of all sizes on Internet marketing engagement, strategy and execution. He regularly speaks on website design techniques and WordPress. Peter is a graduate from California State University, Sacramento, and practices the ancient art of eating sushi with nose-hair-curling wasabi.

About My Internet Scout

Based in Wilmington, North Carolina, My Internet Scout, LLC is an Internet Marketing firm for small- and medium- size businesses. We specialize in WordPress website design, marketing and related services that include e-commerce, event registration, maintenance, content creation and search engine optimization (SEO). We service a variety of clients across the United States.

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