The Necessity of Patch Management

One aspect of site security is neglected more often than any other: Keeping your CMS software patched and up to date. We see this problem occur over and over again. Clients purchase websites with content management systems, then once we hand it off to them they do not keep it patched.

We’ll say it again: You must keep up with your website’s CMS software patches! A large number of Joomla! sites were recently compromised by a bot that specifically searched for a very commonly-installed extension which had been the subject of a security patch. The hackers knew that many people would have failed to install the path, so the bot looked for unpatched versions of the extension as a doorway into the site. It worked very well; a number of sites fell victim.

Your CMS software is no different than the software on your desktop, your notebook, your smart phone: There will be patches and maintenance releases and you must install them to keep your site safe from attackers. Also, don’t forget, many times those patches also bring with them new functionality or improved performance, so if you fail to take advantage of the upgrades, you may be missing out on enhancements that also add value to your site.

If you are not comfortable doing upgrades yourself, find someone to help, or contact us. Charges for this type of work are very low — unless of course you have neglected it for too long and you already have a problem — then it gets expensive!