We love Joomla. We wouldn’t be here if we didn’t. As content management systems (CMSs) go Joomla’s cross compatibility make it the ideal choice for the more discerning of webmasters.
Getting a call when you’re out of the office – or away from you bedroom; hey, it still counts as an office – that requires some swift alterations to be made on your site would be potentially panic inducing for a user of WordPress or Drupal, but the cross platform element of Joomla allows you to open it up on any system and get to work wherever you are.
Linux based OS? Mac? Standard Windows? It doesn’t matter; Joomla’s software is compatible with all formats, making you unlikely to get caught short.
Joomla also gives us far more scope; its open format has allowed developers to create far more Joomla templates and extensions than for competing CMSs, allowing webmasters that don’t have a Masters degree in computer science or a freakishly well developed knowledge of coding to do things they could only dream of on other interfaces.
While Joomla might not have the customisable features the Drupal has, the obtuse nature of this rival CMS makes it almost impossible for beginners to get to grips with it without the aid of some seriously time-consuming tutorials. Joomla allows users to log in and get started, slowly becoming more confident and assured as time progresses.
So yeah, Joomla is amazing; but still some people shy away from it. Why is this? Well, over the course of its development, Joomla has been unfairly singled out at various points as being vulnerable and lacking the requisite security features to make it a viable option for your website.
While the use of Joomla as some sort of internet danger scapegoat was unfair, some users who were happily running their websites via Joomla interfaces did find themselves suddenly vulnerable to internet nastiness. This is because Joomla is an open format program and, as such, requires constant updating to ensure safe and secure operation.
So, the first way of staying safe on Joomla is also a blindingly obvious one: ensure your system is regularly updated. Authorise automatic updates on your Joomla account or check the official Joomla site regularly to ensure that the version of the program you are operating is the most up to date one.
This problem is far from unique to Joomla. Any open source program is vulnerable to attack simply because its boundaries are not clearly defined and so cannot be covered by a catch-all security system. The fear is that many users of such programs consider themselves fully protected until the time comes when they are forced to upgrade their system; i.e. when the system they are currently operating is no longer supported.
In actuality, the fluid nature of software development means that plug-ins and extensions expire are constantly expiring and having to be replaced with more secure features. Even if your copy of Joomla is still supported, not running an up to date version can leave you exposed.
Downloading the Admin Tools plug-in gives uncertain users somewhat of a safety net. This tool keeps an eye on the releases of new Joomla versions, adds password protection to administrative directories, and fixes file and directory permission codes as well as a whole host of other user-friendly security features.
OSE Anti-Hacker is another plug-in for Joomla that keeps users informed of exactly what is going on their account. OSE identifies hacking attempts and threats and gives you an idea of what areas of your system are vulnerable and which ones are strong. While the idea of knowing when someone is attacking you and where from might be a bit of a scary one, it’s a hell of a lot more comforting than knowing you are under attack but having no idea when, why and by who.
Downloading and applying plug-ins is probably the best way to ensure that your Joomla experience remains a pleasant one. Of all the safety extensions, RS Firewall is amongst the most popular. User-friendly and highly effective, RS Firewall does not compromise on any area of its coverage. However, this lack of compromise is reflected in its price. While not particularly cheap, the RS Firewall is still a bargain compared to the alternative of having to rescue your beloved website from an evil internet hacker.
Hopefully these plug-ins and tips will have the desired effect. Remember, Joomla offers unparalleled security as long as you keep your wits about you and stay safe.
Additionally, you can use some software to improve network security with a reliable antivirus software that you can combine with a super-active firewall software. These will also help you stay safe when visiting live sites as well.
Author Bio: Rob Pell spends far too much time playing with solar gadgets, likes Marmite and writes for Simplifydigital, the UK broadband, digital TV and home phone experts. Simplifydigital are Ofcom accredited and provide independent advice to consumers looking for the right broadband, TV and home phone packages.