The Cobbler’s Kid Had No Shoes…or proper security

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A Crashed Site.  That’s What I Get For Being Lazy & Distracted

Okay so of all the sites I’ve been juggling with, the only one I kept at the lowest priority to get around to updating/installing proper security software and backup was my own blog.  And wouldn’t you know it… literally a day or two before I was to get to it… my host got hacked in a big way.   Of course I wasn’t sweating it, because I know that my host did nightly backups for me – it’s all part of their list of featured selling points and I was told as much by the sales rep.  Here is where a small, but crucial bit of info was somehow left out:  they do nightly backups of everything but the contents of the associated sql databases.  What?  Isn’t that kinda the most important part?  You know… where the original content is stored.  Who gives a rats ass about the plugins and other stuff – just redownload and install.  Can’t do that with original content (unless you have a backup).  Obvious info I could have been told way back when I got the account.   But alas… I was young(er) and inexperienced back then.

Meh.  Who am I kidding?  It usually takes a little pain for one to learn the really important stuff. 

What kind of pain came with this lesson? I basically lost about a years worth of blogs.  Ouch!  That really sucks.  I was pretty unhappy about it.  So here is the bottom line of what happened:  I trusted what was advertised to me as “automatic daily backups” by my hosting provider to mean that also included the actual content within my sql databases.  A natural key assumption that never went double checked and I paid the price.   But the good news is that I was able to recover most of the lost files from my buddy’s computer.  It just so happened that he had cached copies of many of those pages saved on his computer, where I would have otherwise had no way to recover them.  Yeah for Vlad not cleaning out his browser cache!  What a save on the content.

So in the meantime, I’ve had to rebuild my site from scratch and I apologize (like anyone missed it) it’s taken me awhile longer than I had originally anticipated -  I’ve just been swamped with other work.  So in the meantime, at least now it’s back up and running.   I know it’s a bit messy still.  I’ve got a lot of cleaning up yet still to do, but I figure what the heck.  Just get it back up and running and I’ll fix the mess when I can get to it.


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About Tony Kinard

Digitally Innovative, Obsessively Creative, Fearless Advertising/Marketing Exec. For 16+ years I've had the honor of working with brilliant ad agencies, digital marketing innovators and technology vanguards. It's been amazingly fun and exciting work helping clients to successfully leverage tech innovations and new ideas. From scrappy startups to some of the best known brands in the world, I love the challenges they present. The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some great ideas!
  • Sharon Gutowski

    I’m really thankful I read this. I have always assumed (doh!) that automatic back-ups include everything on the website. I’m sad you lost those blog posts because I just found your site and would have learned from them. Oh well. At least I know to dig a lot deeper regarding those offerings.