Happy New Year from Montague WebWorks

January is always a good time to review your website and your online security

Dear MWW Customer,

We wish you all the very best in this new year, still full of promise, all shiny and sparkly.

Whenever we turn a new year on our calendars, here at MWW Central, we always spend a little time reviewing our online presence, and the state of your login passwords. Here are some tips you may want to consider thinking about or even acting upon in this new year. This is important, so please read and take it under advisement.

Reviewing Your Website

As a general practice, you should review at least your homepage once a month. But in the new year, it's especially important to take a deeper look at your website to determine if it's still accurate in terms of our offerings, time in business, and any other information that might change in the new year. It's also a good time to review your goals, and how that could be reflected in your website.

You may have a new logo, or new photos, or new products, or a collection of customer email addresses you could add to your mailing lists, or in general want to "freshen up" your website, either with a new template or a simple tweaking of what's there. Maybe add more color. Or less.

One of the best things you could do is write up a news article about what's going on with your business or organization. Give it three or four paragraphs, be somewhat detailed, and wish your customers or constituents a happy new year (which is universal, after all). Once the article is done, with a good photo attached, email it out to all your contacts. Let them know you're still here and thinking about them. Maybe it'll help them think about you, and maybe they'll reciprocate and get back to you!

Reviewing Your PASSWORDS

Hackers have gotten much better at breaking in to websites across the globe, including high profile sites, such as Facebook and Twitter (combined, over 720 million accounts so far), banks, etc. What they are looking for are email addresses and passwords. They know that most people use the same password for many if not all website accounts, email accounts, etc., and so stealing that info from one site may garner them access to many sites, if they can find them and test the stolen credentials.

CASE IN POINT: we have a local customer who's main admin email was hacked just this week. The hackers created multiple additional email accounts at the customer's domain and began sending "phishing" emails to a large list of other email addresses they stole. This is a very dangerous situation. We immediately changed all passwords on the server for their domain, and deleted the new hacker accounts.

What could have happened? With total control of the admin email address for their account the hackers could have run "forgot password" attempts on every online bank, social media and other high target websites to see if they get a hit. If they get one, they could take over those accounts as well. We're talking dark web stuff here. Very serious.

The best way to avoid all this is to first see if your email address(es) have been found in hacker databases.

If your email address(es) are present in the databases, it's time to change your passwords EVERYWHERE that that email address is used, including your own website.

Let us know if you need help with this, especially if we host your email.

If you do nothing, it's only a matter of time. Make January 2023 the month you take care of this critical (although time consuming) task, for your own personal safety, and the safety of your personal information. Don't be the victim of Identity Theft.

So, on that note, HAPPY NEW YEAR. Be safe, and prosperous in the new year, and we hope to see you at a local event or restaurant!

-Mik & Donna
Montague WebWorks