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Secure your WordPress installation

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015

We’ve recently been plagued with a number of hacking and spamming events caused by WordPress installations. Or, more accurately, out-of-date WordPress installations.

As great a piece of software as WordPress is, if it’s not kept up-to-date with the latest releases and security patches then it becomes a magnet for even the most amateur hacker. Scripts such as xmlrpc.php can be easily manipulated to send out large amounts of spam. You may not think this is an issue for you personally but if just one of those spam messages hits a spam trap, then the server’s IP address is blacklisted and other users will find they’re unable to send mail.

We’re not having a go at WordPress here. It’s a great piece of software and there’s a reason it’s the world’s most popular blogging platform, however you cannot simply install it and forget about it. It MUST be kept up-to-date. This issue is not restricted to WordPress of course – it affects any PHP software running on your server – WordPress is just more of a target due to the volume of installations out there.

There are many tools freely available that can ‘lock-down’ your WordPress installation – one we’ve played with ourselves is:

https://wordpress.org/plugins/better-wp-security/

It’s a WordPress plugin that’s available free, very easy to install and provides a run-down of the things you should do once you’ve installed WordPress (such as disabling the dreaded xmlrpc.php!)

There are server wide settings we can employ that will help stop some of these attacks however they also restrict genuine functionality which then causes more issues.

Urgent server maintenance – server15

Wednesday, November 6th, 2013

Customers hosting on server15.simplewebserver.co.uk may be aware of two short outages overnight. The first was around 30 minutes – this was due to the server being rebooted and needing to do a full disk check. The second, a couple of hours later was for just a few minutes.

On investigation this morning it has become apparent that these outages were caused by a failing disk drive which will need replacing. Fortunately the disk drive in question is the one used for backups which should make the process fairly easy.

Between 9pm and 10pm this evening (Wednesday, 6th November) we’ll be taking the server offline in order to replace the failing drive. There will be around a 30 minute window of service disturbance during this time as we power down the server, remove the drive and check everything is as it should be in the BIOS.

We apologise for the short notice but I’m sure you’ll appreciate the urgency required here.

January Server Uptime Report

Saturday, February 23rd, 2013

Every month we work hard at simplewebhosting.co.uk to ensure our servers are available around the clock and in January, 2013 we achieved a massive 99.99% uptime.

Monitored by Pingdom

February Uptime Figures

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

February’s web hosting uptime figures are in and it’s an impressive 99.96% across our network. This figure includes a large PHP upgrade completed on each machine.

Monitored by Pingdom

WordPress 3.3 – important update available now

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

The latest version of WordPress is now available and anyone using this software should upgrade immediately.

It includes a new drag-and-drop uploader, hover menus for the navigation, a new toolbar, improved co-editing support, and a new Tumblr importer. More information is available directly from WordPress at http://wordpress.org/news/2011/12/sonny/

Keeping software installed in your webspace up-to-date is critical to ensure hackers can’t gain access to your and your fellow hosters data through security exploits.

Why not invest in a GeoTrust Anti-Malware Scan to prove to your customers that you care about their security? Find out more at http://www.simplewebhosting.co.uk/web-hosting/geotrust-anti-malware-scan.php

 

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