The Support Forums will be in read-only mode for a scheduled maintenance window on 01 September 2016 14:00 UTC - 20:00 UTC. More information.

[closed] Question About Possible Hack of Site (162 posts)

  1. KnowingArt_com
    Posted 6 years ago #

    "folks, you can't upgrade "just once a year" because you "feel like it," if you want the max protection available at any given time from WordPress. it IS your fault if you don't/can't/won't keep your installs current - whether you do them yourselves or pay someone to do them.

    it's just laziness, not to upgrade, compounded by a lack of knowledge. btw, i have about 9 blogs. they all get upgraded when there's a WP upgrade. is it a pita? yeah, kinda. but the whole thing is done in less than an hour - a small price to pay for keeping installs as safe as possible.

    @kirkpete - a troll? whooami is the most knowledgeable WP person i've ever met. whooami just wants people to _think_ and learn. has donated hundreds, if not thousands, of hours to the message boards, teaching people, etc."

    You are hilarious.

    - I don't need "max protection" as I have something called a backup.

    - I have several blogs too and I can make changes to all of them at once, with one click, in 1 second.

    - There's a good chance I may never upgrade. If I really want a new feature I can code it myself.

    - I don't need a "jazz inspired" admin panel.

    - Whooami is just a guy who discovered the Internet in 1993. You should get out more.

  2. dyske
    Posted 6 years ago #

    I just read Core Security Technologies' bulletin. It's a different issue, but it appears that fixing that security hole happened to fix this double-slash security hole also.

    Core's bulletin describes the hacker being able to access plugin pages. The problem we are dealing with on this thread deals with the hacker being able to access all the Options pages (including the Permalink Options page) just with a subscriber account and with adding another slash after wp-admin (e.g. /wp-admin//options-general.php)

    It appears to me that as part of the fix to address the security hole discovered by Core, the development team added the "capability" checks more consistently across all the admin pages. So, this double-slash hack no longer works in 2.8.4. But, I'm not sure if the WP team was aware of the double-slash problem.

    The following line to check user's capabilities should have been added consistently to all the admin pages, but it appears that they were added little by little over the years:

    if ( ! current_user_can('manage_options') )
    	wp_die(__('You do not have sufficient permissions to manage options for this blog.'));

    The oldest version that I have at my disposal is 2.6, and I see some admin pages have this checking routine but many do not. As the version number increased, more of these checks were added. I'm not sure why the team decided to use it sporadically. Since the mechanism already existed in 2.6, why not use it consistently for all pages? Even the names of capabilities were already defined in 2.6, so I tried adding the lines above to all the admin pages in 2.6, and they worked fine. It's somewhat strange to implement a nice mechanism but not use it.

    In any case, as far as I can tell, this hack should not work on 2.8.4 because the second step of this hack (after creating a subscriber account) requires access to the Permalink Options page via a subscriber account. I tried but it didn't work.

  3. whooami
    Posted 6 years ago #

    Whooami is just a guy who discovered the Internet in 1993.

    and you should read .. you obviously arent. and actually, it was 1995. And im quite pleased with that, thank you very much.

    KnowingArt_com, Ive no doubt that if you you wanted to have a secure 2.0.11 install, you probably could. thats not the norm, though. You do understand that right? The average wordpress user doesnt know what to do to make an older install more secure.

    Finally, quoting someone:

    Please Upgrade

    There is absolutely no reason not to upgrade. WordPress is famous for it’s 5 minute install, but it takes time and effort to maintain it. If you don’t want the hassle of upgrading, or don’t know how to maintain it, why not get a hosted WordPress account at WordPress.com? Does the $10 you make from advertising every month really justify the time it takes to make sure your site, your writing, your photos and other media are safe? This isn’t an advert for WordPress.com, go with any blogging system you like, but don’t make life easy for the scum out there who’ll take over your out of date software and use it to their advantage.

  4. KnowingArt_com
    Posted 6 years ago #

    "hows that plugin working out for you now that your "shit" is hacked?

    I wasn't hacked. You presume nothing? You just did.

    they couldnt upgrade... they need that plugin ... they "just wanna blog" ... blah blah blah.

    Im sick of it.

    And that shows. Nobody is forcing you to read this thread. Keep in mind, we have the source code. Automattic's concerns are not my concerns, their goals are not my goals.

  5. dyske
    Posted 6 years ago #


    There's a good chance I may never upgrade. If I really want a new feature I can code it myself.

    Not a bad idea. The thing is, upgrading does not necessarily make the site more secure. New features could introduce new security holes. It's possible that WP 1.0 is still more secure than 2.8.4. (although I've never seen 1.0 myself). The introduction of all the new features and the complexity of code also introduce possible security vulnerabilities. This time the upgraders came across as the smart ones, but it's possible that in the future, all the upgraders get hit by hackers who targeted the security hole in a new feature. If so, the upgraders could come across as the fools. You never know. There are plenty of very simple blog applications that never required any upgrading for years without getting hacked. The key is simplicity. So, any web app development is about striking the right balance that YOU want. WP is a good example of sacrificing security for the sake of features.

  6. Not a bad idea. The thing is, upgrading does not necessarily make the site more secure. New features could introduce new security holes.

    Mind if I modify that sentiment? For the 99.999% of end users here, that should be

    Not a bad idea if you really honestly, truly, not-fooling-around-code-better-than-anyone.

    I've resisted this pile on (hey, the first 100 posts were gripping and I could not put it down, but lately it's been just repetitive) but seriously: unless you really know what you are doing, keeping up your version up to date is the responsible thing to do.

    Not upgrading is a choice and dealing with the consequences is being grown up. Unfortunately someone's hacked install hurts the neighborhood.

    KnowingArt_com may be that PHP god we all aspire to be (well some of us) so I assume he's safe. But as it has been repeated about 100 times here, if you don't maintain your installation you will get hacked.

    Complaining about it is like complaining about having to trim your nails. You don't have to but the cool kids will stop hanging out with you.

  7. whooami
    Posted 6 years ago #

    "hows that plugin working out for you now that your "shit" is hacked?

    I wasn't hacked. You presume nothing? You just did.

    on the contrary, I wasnt speaking specifically to you. did you miss the quotes?

    dyske, you make some very aguable points points, and in fact, new features in wordpress have introduced new holes.

    the thing is, upgrading does not necessarily make the site more secure.

    theoretically speaking, no it doesnt. what it does do, is save you from this and more:


    and honestly, in the end, it gives you alot more leeway with people when you want to complain about something going wrong after the fact.

    Liken it to voting, if you will, for simplicity -- "if you dont vote you cant bitch".

    And FFS, before ANYONE comes back and says im telling them they cant complain about wordpress, or complain about ahckers, I am NOT. What Im saying is that its easier to illicit the virtual hug that is so often needed after you have your site hacked, if youve taken care of your business.

  8. dyske
    Posted 6 years ago #


    Liken it to voting, if you will, for simplicity -- "if you dont vote you cant bitch".

    I've learned from this experience that your statement above is correct. In fact, I think WordPress.org should have a simple questionnaire that helps the users to decide whether to go with self-install (.org) or hosted (.com) where one of the questions is: "Are you willing to upgrade as soon as a new version is released?" If the user answers "no", s/he should be redirected to wordpress.com instead of downloading the installer.

    If the user needs to customize the site (beyond what wordpress.com allows), then s/he would probably be better off going with Blogger, which is more secure.

    If such practical advice were given more prominently on wordpress.org, we would see much less "bitching", and the web would be that much safer for it. "Voting" is a social obligation. The problem with WordPress is that most people are not aware of the fact that upgrading is an obligation when you install WP yourself; it is not a preference. This should be made clear to all self-installers.

  9. whooami
    Posted 6 years ago #


    Not to discourage this conversation, because I actually enjoy the theoreticals, but youre not the first one to suggest that. Its another pandora's box, though, since arguably, "wordpress" proper could, and probably would say, "thats not our responsibility". And really, is it?

    Its not just "wordpress" proper though, and thats why I get so frustrated on here some days. Case in point, the hundreds of threads on here, where someone new asks, "is wordpress for me?". Far too often for my taste, the responses arent forthright enough. Instead, everyone says "yes yes yes, use wordpress.. you can do that, etc.."

    There probably needs to be more of this:


    And keep in mind, those sorts of replies dont make me friends around here. (im presumptuous, bitchy, a troll, etc..)

    In all fairness, though, hackery isnt a wordpress specific problem. Joomla is far more historically insecure than WP. The necessity for upgrades stems from the use of PHP, a dynamic language -- the same reason Joomla, phpBB, etc, come out with security upgrades.

    If youre not using straight HTML on a site -- chances are you need to keep current on whatever codebase youre using..

    Interestingly enough, my quote above where I dont name the author, the "Please Upgrade" one .. is from Donncha, a wordpress developer.


    The other interesting fact is that you now have developers putting together wordpress sites, and then removing the upgrade notifications from the dashboard.

  10. figaro
    Posted 6 years ago #

    Liken it to voting, if you will, for simplicity -- "if you dont vote you cant bitch".

    Just a side note to this "entertaining" thread...nice catch phrase, but, for what it's worth, completely wrong and illogical. There is no relationship between the act of voting and the right to bitch ;-)

    Bottom line...if people want to upgrade--fine; if people don't want to upgrade--fine; if people want to contribute 200 posts to a thread on a free support site talking about getting hacked because they didn't upgrade--fine; if people want to help people who didn't upgrade and got hacked--fine; if people don't want to help people who didn't upgrade and got hacked--fine;..........not sure why the need for all the personal attacks and foul language here....but then again, based on my own advice, if people (myself included) don't want to read a 200 post thread where people are talking about not upgrading and getting hacked, then they don't have to click on the thread...all is good ;-)

  11. whooami
    Posted 6 years ago #

    wow figaro, ever heard of a cliche?


    its a pretty well-known phrase. and I didnt say anything about "rights". :P

    a: "I dont like our President"
    b: "Thats a drag, did you vote?"
    a: "No"

    b: /walks away.

    Pretty simple.

  12. Samuel B

    Posted 6 years ago #

    gotten way out of line with the attacks
    there is good info in this thread so I'll leave it up and selectively delete a few posts..sorry but keep it civil

Topic Closed

This topic has been closed to new replies.

About this Topic