Category Archives: Small Business

Let’s talk about hacking….

Let’s talk about hacking….

Why not? Everyone’s doing it. We might as well talk about it.

So, if you’ve ever read any of my posts, you probably know that www.mikesmull.com was really just a place to build out new client sites, experiment with plugins and try out some new things in WordPress that I’d read about. I finally cleaned it up a bit and occasionally do a post or two. It’s been a bit since my last post but I really had to write something about hacking because, you guessed it, this site got hacked. And, all of those installs of WordPress that I had in subdirectories also got nailed. So here are a few things I’ve learned.

  1. WordPress is great. Great community. Lot’s of super cool plugins and just a lot of fun to work with.
  2. WordPress is very popular.
  3. It’s attacked often and relentlessly by hackers.
  4. Plugins, even the best ones, have vulnerabilities. (Gravity Forms caused my issue and it’s a favorite of mine!)
  5. Cleaning up the mess can be a real pain in the you know what.

This is important for web designers like myself and it’s very important for clients to understand and to have a plan in place in case this happens to their live sites. I’m currently using Backup Buddy for most WordPress sites and I’m experimenting with WordFence and a few other plugins. I’m also looking at a third party service called Securi.net. I’m in the testing phase so I can hopefully put together a good plan for all of my clients going forward. Unfortunately, I don’t think the hacking is going to stop so we have to do our best to keep it at bay.

What’s your anti-hacking plan? Have one that’s working well? Want to share? Give me a shout!

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Another GoDaddy Gotcha!

I just recently learned that GoDaddy.com does not offer any type of backup utility in their control panel. This is typically not a problem for me because I don’t use their hosting. However, some of my clients do. We were having an issue with a great Email Form Processor called MachForm that we’ve been using without… Continue Reading

My Business in a 4′ x 2′ Space

I was thinking the other day about how much has changed for me as a graphic designer since I began my career. We were using a Mac to set type, but we just couldn’t do the things we do today.  I also used a Stat Camera to prepare mechanicals, enlarge logos, create film for the… Continue Reading

Planting Seeds for Growth

Planting Seeds for Growth

Today I planted my summer garden. What does that have to do with small business and web design. Good question. Here’s what I was thinking about as I planted this afternoon. With every small addition to your website, you plant new seeds for growth. New blog posts, news, updates, new product information…. whatever it is,… Continue Reading

The Website Funnel

Why does your small business have a website? No, really, what is the purpose of your site? I work with many clients that offer very specific products or services. They may do many things, but their business is really based around a few main areas. But so often they want to fill their home pages with… Continue Reading

Content First – Really?

You bet and here’s why. The first question just about every new web design client asks me is – “How long will it take to get my site live?” I always answer – “That depends. Where are you with your content?” I can’t tell you how many times I’ve started a project full-steam ahead just to… Continue Reading

Is your site Mobile Friendly?

This site is and yours should be too. From Google: Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high… Continue Reading