It’s an ongoing battle between the good guys and the bad guys.
The bad guys are constantly looking for ways to compromise the software that runs on your computer and the software that runs your website. Unfortunately for all of us, compromising computer systems has become big business. Industry experts place the shadow Internet economy at more than US$105 billion in 2008.
Much of the software that powers the web is open source. The open source community has a great track record when it comes to resolving vulnerabilities swiftly once they’ve been discovered, but unless you keep your system up to date, the fact that a vulnerability has been fixed does not make your site more secure. The bad guys cash in on the fact that a large number of sites are not properly maintained, often using vulnerabilities which have been fixed months or years earlier. According to WhiteHat Security’s most recent Website Security Statistics Report, 63% of websites currently have high, critical or urgent security issues which have not been corrected.
To keep your desktop or laptop secure and operating smoothly, you perform regular maintenance and software updates (you do take care of this, don’t you?). Your website needs continuing maintenance to keep in top shape too.