Note the rather uncharacteristic post title from my recent blog hack. The humor of the particular spam title and my post image was not lost on me. Call me the poster child for the need for a structured, secure data security plan:
- In 2008, the hard drive on my brand new iMac failed four months after purchase and I almost lost all my data (I was in the middle of working on my book).
- Earlier this year, my web host had a series of technical glitches and I lost all my sites for almost a week. It wasn't until it happened that I realized the backup widgets I thought were installed were not. Only by the grace of a dedicated team (@naominiles , @matthewrayscott @va4hire @pmurrah and Scott Rivers) did I get all the data back (it takes a village to restore your online business).
- In November, my web host was hit by a hacker, and my blog was infiltrated by viagra spam. The quick acting of @timgrahl and @williejackson scrubbed my site of unscrupulous code, but not before suffering embarrassment.
These experiences have made me an advocate for "scaring straight" new entrepreneurs about the need for data security protection.
Willie Jackson, Photo by Robert Bromfield
I had the good fortune to interview freelance technology consultant Willie Jackson on this topic today, and invite you to listen to our 25-minute podcast about data security. Willie is a former technology consultant for Accenture, and one of the six "accomplices" recently chosen by Seth Godin to work on The Domino Project. Willie was also featured in my side hustle and flow series earlier this year. Common data security mistakes discussed in the podcast:
- Not having a backup service for your website/blog
- Thinking that FTP backup of Wordpress saves all your content (hint: it does not)
- Creating weak passwords
- Securing only your business data and forgetting priceless personal data like family photos
- Shopping for web hosts purely on price, not thinking about security and support
Services discusses on the podcast:
Automatic Wordpress Backup
AVG Free (for Windows)
Backupify Vault Press (extra special support, but requires "golden ticket" invitation. I am pretty sure the service is run by Willie Wonka)
Web Host Page.ly
If you are too overwhelmed to get backups set up yourself, holler at Willie:
@williejackson willie (at) williejackson (dot) com
May your backups be secure and all your data bright and clean in 2011!