Andrew Wilder is a connoisseur of many things – from food to technology. The creator of the popular food blog Eating Rules and a general builder, fixer, and maintenance guy for websites since 1998, Andrew has fused these passions together by founding the company, NerdPress (formerly known as, Blog Tutor). His clients – who are mostly food bloggers, culinary professionals, and other solopreneurs – can now focus on doing the work they love instead of spending valuable time maintaining their websites.
NerdPress has 100% WordPress customers, all with a variety of hosts. Though some are still shared (Andrew is moving them to VPS setups), his preferred host is CloudWave. This works best for him because of its useful customer service; an asset to any one-person business. With 45+ websites to service, Andrew knew eventually he’d need assistance with securing each of them as well.
I can’t be on a call 24/7. I’m usually the first phone call but I don’t want to be the only phone call. Quite a few clients over the years who have come to me have said help my website has been hacked what do I do?
Andrew had been able to fix these sort of problems on his own most times but when NerdPress got hacked, he discovered that the hardest thing to figure out is how it happened, so it wouldn’t happen again.
There’s this image of a teenager in his basement drinking mountain dew hacking sites. But that’s not what it is anymore, right? It’s all automated hacks.
Andrew heard about Sucuri early on through a partnership from a hosting company and several blog posts. At a time when there weren’t a lot of website security services, Sucuri was kind of – it, Andrew recalls. However, now that he personally needed to select a website security service, there were many WordPress plugins available and a lot more competition. Yet for Andrew to get NerdPress back up and running quickly and with no reinfections, he entrusted Sucuri.
Sucuri was a good product with a good price point. I’ve seen Sucuri’s competitors be significantly more expensive and limited access and still they cause tons of problems on the site. You already are locked in for a year, adding a lot of headache.
For NerdPress, he initially needed cleanup service, then progressed to adding the Sucuri Platform and Firewall protection. Andrew also installed the Sucuri WordPress plugin on all of his own sites and added server-side monitoring. Andrew utilizes Sucuri for daily monitoring of malware blacklisting, DNS changes, and SSL certificates. He takes it on himself to protect his clients with various hardening approaches and enjoys helping to keep them updated by having the best security practices in mind.
Whether it’s a new threat, new malware, or a new WordPress update, Andrew believes that educating customers is sometimes better than actually cleaning the site itself and it keeps them on their toes too. Recently, he even went as far as creating a free seven-day training course on his website: seven step-by-step email series that clients can walk through.
If something happens, I act like a concierge. Most clients are very tech-phobic. Sucuri makes my life a lot easier and I make my client’s life easy and less stressful.
Andrew is a fan of the Sucuri daily scanner that flags possible problems overnight so it can be addressed right away. Even though the results can be a false positive, Andrew would rather err on the side of caution with Sucuri as his backup. Andrew had considered using other plugins and just keeping the malware removal scanner, but then he realized he didn’t have to:
The scanner sits outside and doesn’t rely on WordPress. The Sucuri plugin isn’t that aggressive. It doesn’t get in the way, which makes your website faster. I don’t have the automated tools or expertise that Sucuri does. So it’s been really helpful for Sucuri to jump in and actually do the fixes when necessary.
Andrew has peace of mind knowing Sucuri is there if he needs them for his website security needs. He always understood its importance and will continue to share the value in having a service like Sucuri for any website owner, especially small business owners who tend to have a distorted idea of who is targeting them, why and the severity of an attack on their business, not if, but when it happens.
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