These Days, It’s Automatic
WordPress is the single largest website platform out there. It's also the single largest target for website hackers. The good news is that the WordPress community is taking this threat seriously. Now it's time for website owners to do the same.
The number of WordPress websites is somewhere between 60 and 75 million, depending on your source and when the measure was taken. The WordPress.org site itself claims that some 27% of the web uses WordPress. That’s huge.
True Confession time: I wasn’t always a WP fan. Truth is that 10 years ago, WordPress was more trouble than it was worth. Heck, even 5 years ago. Somewhere since then, however, the tide shifted. WordPress kept gaining momentum while other Content Management Systems lost theirs, and while we used to recommend Drupal as the best CMS to work with; we’ve changed our minds and now reach for WordPress when a client wants content management and doesn’t want to sell things.
And as the saying goes; ‘with great power comes great responsibility’. As WordPress is the single largest website platform out there, it’s also the single largest target for website hackers. WordPress and those who create plugins for WP need to make sure that there are no vulnerabilities in their code; and when they learn of them, they need to release updates or patches that address the problem.
The good news is they are.
Playing Well Together
It used to be that there was a WordPress update every few months or so, and plugin updates were yearly events. We would do those manually because not all plugins were compatible, and automatically updating a site could bring some rather unwanted consequences!
Those days are long-gone, and we are finding ourselves with a few updates every week! This can be time consuming and can get costly for clients. Most plugins are better built, partly because the WordPress developer community is more mature, and partly because of improvements to WordPress core itself.
Ensuring Website Security
So we’ve taken the step to automate WordPress updates. For those sites that we host ourselves, we can also create automatic backups. Those two actions together, along with other security measures, help us to ensure that our WP sites are as secure as possible. If some plugin incompatibility causes a site to run a-muck, we’ve got a current backup standing by that we can fall back on while we make the updates by hand.
We’ll be working to take similar steps for those clients that we manage but don’t host.
Our passion is connecting people through design and technology. And with these automatic updates we are doing so – safely.