Could ongoing website maintenance give you greater peace-of-mind? Read on to discover the mistake one business recently made…
Last month, I received a call from someone who attended a presentation I had given on Internet Presence Marketing in Greenwich, Connecticut.
“Hi Andy, this is Brian. I met you yesterday during the presentation. I have a client who needs your help.” Brian went on to explain that his client had a website that needed some updating. “I think they just want to change a few photos, maybe update a couple of pages, but it’s a really small project and I don’t know if you would be interested.”
Brian was right — his client’s project sounded very small, and my focus has been on helping businesses that want to grow. I decided not to contact Brian’s client.
But then this week, the phone rang.
“Hi Andy, this is Margaret. You probably don’t know me, but I got your name from Brian.”
I quickly realized that this was the client Brian had called me about.
“We need some help updating our website, do you do that?”
I politely suggested that if she just needs to change a few things, it would be more efficient to have the previous web developer do it for her.
Then I asked if there was anything else that she needed.
“Well, our clients have also been telling me that when they click on the products on our website, it takes them to someone else’s website.”
Their website had been hacked!
Sure enough, I was able to determine that Margaret’s website had been compromised – hacked – and malicious computer code had been added to her website pages. Links to her company’s products had been replaced with links to other websites. Margaret’s company had no one who was responsible for keeping the website software up-to-date; critical software patches and updates hadn’t been applied, and hackers took advantage of a vulnerability in her website.
The cost of this oversight to Margaret’s company is incalculable; potential customers were directed away from her website and fooled. Trust and goodwill between her company and potential clients has been destroyed. She will never know how many sales were lost. And the malicious code on her website may very well have infected the computers of everyone who visited her website.
Ongoing website maintenance may have prevented this.
While it is impossible to guard against every vulnerability, a pro-active program of ongoing maintenance would likely have prevented this website attack. A small monthly investment to shield and fortify the company’s website is easily justified against the incalculable loss of business and goodwill when a business’ website is hacked. Don’t let this happen to you!