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  1. #1
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    Wordpress - friend or foe?
    Hi guys, i had a wordpress blog as part of a site, it was hacked and in turn so was my web site! Stuff happens! In my case i had over 3000 folders injected with 9 files, which zapped my storage and sucked my bandwidth. I have cleaned it all up and no longer use wordpress.
    HOWEVER:
    I see so many people building a business/s solely using wordpress! I understand that the thousands of add ons can build a site and stick it on auto/turbo drive whilst you just sit back and count the money! Yeah right...

    Wordpress is simple to get started in and the add ons do help, but as with all things that are popular, they are open to exploitation. In my case some Turkish hackers found a way in. Thankfully, i never really got into the blogging lark and it was no loss to me, but i can imagine those that use this as the only on line presence, could potentially be wiped out overnight!

    Which then led me to the thoughts of the recent "Google Farmer Update" discussed elsewhere on the forum.

    Whats to stop google wiping the blogsphere in a single wave of the almighty arm, in the same way it clipped the wings of thin content/article web sites.

    I wonder how many rely on this single platform for affiliate marketing, and what back up plan you have in place should the mighty arm sweep again. Perhaps the wording should be WHEN.

    Regards
    JIM
    Last edited by 2busy; March 29th, 2011 at 01:32 PM. Reason: at request of OP

  2. #2
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    Many of my websites on various platforms have been hacked, one day or an other. Wordpress is a target because everybody is using it these days. If you keep WP up to date, you'll feel much safer.
    I've several backups of my sites and up to now I've always been able to restore them after cleaning the mess.

    What I'll like to see is a database with the names and addresses of these Turkish, Bulgarian, Polish... hackers. I'll like to pay them a visit.

  3. #3
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Excellent point, and one that makes blog.sitename.com a little more appealing than sitename.com/blog, since you could always host that on a separate server (like a cheap Virtual Server)...
    Last edited by MichaelColey; March 22nd, 2011 at 05:13 PM.
    Michael Coley
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  5. #4
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    Wordpress is a target because everybody is using it these days.
    My point exactly.

    And with thinner wordpress sites being spewed out, because addon a, contributed the content, addon b, the affiliate stuff and addon c the other rubbish, at some point in time enough will be enough and these sites could be wiped! Either by the hackers or Google, overnight!

    JIM

  6. #5
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    Whats to stop google wiping the blogsphere in a single wave of the almighty arm, in the same way it clipped the wings of thin content/article web sites.
    Not all blogs/WP sites are junk, not all garbage is found on WP sites. If trash is put out there, we can expect that it will be plowed under, whatever the format.

    If you build a worthwhile site, I wouldn't worry about hackers or gugel. There are some easy security steps that can send the hackers looking for softer hits and backing up every time you add content that you wouldn't want to redo is just a good business practice. Sorry to hear that it happened to you but they say that experience is a great teacher. I hope it will help you to grow.

  7. #6
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    Experience is indeed a great teacher and it has taught me not to follow the masses. As i said i never did get a feel for blogging but it was this that caused my issues. I have played with wordpress and had actually used this installation for a while then just left it to rot, which in turn would have been my downfall.
    I have to disagree (and i know i put my head in the lions mouth in doing so) but wordpress is going the same way as article directories! It is so simple to throw a site together in wordpress and regurgitate someone else's content, that many see this new wave of thin (very thin content in cases) as a route to riches. I am not knocking bloggers of merit or site owners who put in the same work as lets say traditional web sites, in fact i favor automation and use some within my own web sites, i am simply posing the question of the footprint wordpress site owners leave, and how in due course that might come back and bite them.
    JIM

  8. #7
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    Ive seen WP create some great blogs, but selling products through it is not the best idea.

    For selling products, its crucial to look at the security level of your your provider. Looking to see if a site is PCI Certified is the best way to protect your data. You can find out if a provider is certified on Visa's list of certified companies.

    Hope that was helpful!

  9. #8
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    I don't think that ewh was talking about using WP for a merchant site, affiliates' sites are not normally PCI certified because they are not processing sales.

  10. #9
    ABW Ambassador kaizen's Avatar
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    Lots of people use Wordpress as their platform and so long as they are vigilant on keeping their security up to date, they are not taking a huge risk.

    By far, most of the hacked WP installations are a result of the owner becoming lax with their security and I would hope that anyone earning an income using a WP-based site would be diligent.

  11. #10
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    As a reminder to CMS users... always check your templates!

    Paid templates are generally safer (the author receives compensation, so you hope it's clean), but free templates can easily have code inserted that generates something back to the author. Or - even worse - creates a vulnerability that will not be fixed by a platform update.

    Been there with Joomla a few years back.

    Back to the OP, there has been speculation in other forums that WP sites will be targeted by Google soon. While there is no proof, I'm guessing it could be related to the increase in affiliate tools for WP. Auto-creating 10,000 posts for 10,000 products would be a sign to G that there is some auto-generation, which places them in the same category as pure datafeed sites. In this case, WP would lose any advantage (SEO tools, etc) over datafeed sites.

    I think if someone uses WP as it was originally intended (ie. blogging, creating original content), there's no need to worry.

  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by teezone View Post
    Back to the OP, there has been speculation in other forums that WP sites will be targeted by Google soon. While there is no proof, I'm guessing it could be related to the increase in affiliate tools for WP. Auto-creating 10,000 posts for 10,000 products would be a sign to G that there is some auto-generation, which places them in the same category as pure datafeed sites. In this case, WP would lose any advantage (SEO tools, etc) over datafeed sites.
    Google did it already 7/8 months ago during their big infrastructure update(Caffeine). WordPress blogs are not getting any special treatment anymore.
    An other update could be on the way.

  13. #12
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    Google did it already 7/8 months ago during their big infrastructure update(Caffeine). WordPress blogs are not getting any special treatment anymore.
    An other update could be on the way.
    I had not realised this - thanks for the info.
    I sincerely hope that we never see the day but cant help wondering what if any backup plan WP users have - if the day ever comes.

    JIM
    Last edited by ewh; March 24th, 2011 at 05:04 AM.

  14. #13
    Affiliate Manager AffiliateWarrior's Avatar
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    EWH - I think you are off on something here as I don't see Google taking action to knock down WordPress sites in general - WP is just a site building tool in all reality - it can be used well to create some pretty awesome content sites, or it can be used to create spammy crap sites. I can see Google cracking down on the tricks some people use to create spammy crap sites, but don't see a reason to crack down on WordPress as a platform.
    Wade Tonkin - Affiliate Manager - Fanatics
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  15. #14
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    Wordpress is a safe and secure platform, however hackers keep doing research to find vulnerabilities in the code, any open source application suffers with this kind of issues because the source code is open to all- anyone who is knowledgeable enough to track errors in code can hack a web application if he is able to poke in to the code

    the best remedy is to keep visiting admin panel once in a while and make sure that your version is up to date and its patched against any available security vulnerabilities
    Last edited by Prodigal; March 24th, 2011 at 10:03 AM.

  16. #15
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    Yep thanks guys - the only solution for me is to not use WP as i said in my original post i am not really bothered about blogging or wp or any other (cms)
    It does tickle me thought that so many sites in our game (the crappy ones) are wp based with no real thought for a contingency plan.
    I sincerely hope the future is good for those folks using it.
    JIM

  17. #16
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    WP was a wonderful platform to rank high in the SERP at the beginning (Just a few years ago). It's still a great CMS but because of its ease of use and popularity, WP became a major tool for the spammers and autobloggers. Google had to do something to fight this.
    An interesting discussion between Matt Cutt and Amit Singhal.
    TED 2011: The ‘Panda’ That Hates Farms: A Q&A With Google’s Top Search Engineers | Epicenter*| Wired.com

  18. #17
    Newbie jmpruitt75's Avatar
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    Another thing with most of the bloggers I know who are really blogging, not just using wp for crap sites, is that we dont care so much about google rankings. I get more traffic from facebook, twitter, and social networks. Google could drop all my pages, and I might lose 20% of my traffic.

  19. #18
    Affiliate Manager OutdoorPlayToys's Avatar
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    As a web designer I have built over 30 Wordpress sites (not as blogs but as CMS websites) over the last 3 years...and I have only had 1 client get hacked and that was because she had not ever changed her password from the install password, she was also hosting on Godaddy at the time and they actually admitted all the sites on that server on WP got hacked......Wordpress is a safe platform if you do the following:

    1) Use a safe hosting company (not a Godaddy fan here....but the host does have some impact on the vulnerabilities to your site)

    2) Keep you plugins and Wordpress site UPDATED!!!!!!!!! You may want to read what the latest updates entail and if there are any "glitches before you upgrade, but you do need to do it.

    3) Change your passwords OFTEN!

    I will never use anything but WP for a clients site...it is user friendly, strong as a CMS in regards to functionality and can be added on to easily...it is safe...as long as you take precautions.

    I also work with Zencart and that gets hacked as well....when a site has not been updated or the admin password has not been changed...

    So ANY software can be hacked....if you do not take charge of it!

    Jill
    Just these 2 things alone will help alleviate any hacking attempts....

  20. #19
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    Its about law of average.

    Because there are millions of WP users (I supposed) then you will see WP sites being hacked than say..a Joomla sites (which lets say only have 100,000 users). Therefore WP sites get hacked 10 more times than Joomla even though the percentage are quite the same.

  21. #20
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    So ANY software can be hacked....if you do not take charge of it!
    Well said!

    Its your duty to regularly patch a software if a update is available
    surprisingly, i have seen many webmasters just ignoring those shouting 'UPDATE AVAILABLE' signs under admin panels

    Constantly changing passwords also ensures your safety on the web... along with
    other things 'OutdoorPlayToys' marked in the above reply
    Last edited by Prodigal; March 29th, 2011 at 05:14 AM.

  22. #21
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    My original post until moved and renamed by admin - was not complaining about being hacked! I dont really do blogging and the inconvenience of being hacked was minor.
    My original post was to provoke a debate on what would happen if GOOGLE decided that a large number of wordpress site were deemed to have "thin content" and dealt with them in the same way as the "farmer/panda" updates.
    Whats to stop google wiping the blogsphere in a single wave of the almighty arm, in the same way it clipped the wings of thin content/article web sites.

    I wonder how many rely on this single platform for affiliate marketing, and what back up plan you have in place should the mighty arm sweep again. Perhaps the wording should be WHEN.
    But thanks again for all your replies.
    JIM

  23. #22
    Full Member bobby131313's Avatar
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    I also work with Zencart and that gets hacked as well....when a site has not been updated or the admin password has not been changed...
    On 2 separate occasions I have clicked my fresh referral links, complete with session ids attached, that came from the admin stats panel on a Zencart site. I was able to do anything I wanted with those sites. Fortunately, all I did was contact the site and tell them.

  24. #23
    Affiliate Manager OutdoorPlayToys's Avatar
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    On 2 separate occasions I have clicked my fresh referral links, complete with session ids attached, that came from the admin stats panel on a Zencart site. I was able to do anything I wanted with those sites. Fortunately, all I did was contact the site and tell them.
    Unfortunately a lot of Zencart owners do not properly protect their websites - this includes changing the admin area to a different name and changing the logins....

    It is easy to hack a Zencart if they do not change the default settings.....that was nice of you to let them know though - hopefully they have addressed it!

  25. #24
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ewh View Post
    My original post until moved and renamed by admin - was not complaining about being hacked! I dont really do blogging and the inconvenience of being hacked was minor.
    My apologies for the misunderstanding. I've restored the original title.
    Michael Coley
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  26. #25
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    Thank you Michael - no problem
    JIM

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