3 year anniversary of improving website security

Published by Vic Drover on

Today is Watchful’s three year anniversary of enhancing Joomla website security with centralized updates, backups, and improved management.

To celebrate, we are launching our new auditing tool that performs deep scans of your website and file system.

The audit not only detects deviations from Joomla best-practices, but also hacked core files, dangerous file permissions, and suspicious code such as common malwares.

Year 3 in review

The past year at Watchful has been filled with growth and activity, making our anniversary a good time for reflection.

A growing company

In February, our executives held their first-ever summit at Watchful’s European headquarters in Vufflens-la-Ville, Switzerland.

The 3-day event was very successful. Sessions included brainstorming, technology and financial reviews, strategy, and an evaluation by an independent consulting firm specializing in start-up growth. 

The summit concluded with a half-day retreat in the stunning Swiss Alps.

Since the summit, we have officially hired 2 employees with capacities in testing and engineering. We also hired a temporary employee for JavaScript work.

We also recruited our colleague Yves Koekkoek to help with user experience (see more below).

The Watchful user base is also expanding rapidly. Since August 31, 2014 we have experienced a 29% increase in subscribers and 27% increase in revenue. 

Improved user experience

This past year saw a massive improvement in usability at Watchful following a 3-day UI/UX marathon session with Yves Koekkoek from Labo Internet

Based on this work, our CDO David Pizzotti designed a fresh Watchful interface that clearly separates the Watchful service into two main areas: Insights and Tools.  

Under the leadership of CTO Pierre-André Vullioud, our engineering team brought this new design to life with remarkable results. The new Watchful dashboard is blazing fast — even for large accounts — and is almost entirely free from page refreshes.

With the new user interface, implementing popular features like batch tagging across multiple sites became effortless and intuitive.

Also new today is our website. The design follows the separation of the service into Insights and Tools, and is much simpler to navigate. 

The new website also features new screenshots and a completely new video series. The series was produced by our CEO Victor Drover and is designed to showcase the speed and power of our unique website management interface.

New Joomla security tools and better integrations

We’ve also made significant changes to our infrastructure. 

As noted above, the new website audit is a huge step forward for detecting security problems on your website. 

Additionally, we launched a central user management tool last month. This Single Sign-on tool has proven extremely popular and gives you the ability to manage developer and administrator access to your entire Joomla portfolio. 

As we’ve expanded, we’ve also made improvements to our integrated services such as Uptime Robot and improved compatibility for websites powered by the popular CloudFlare service. 

Our internal monitoring and tracking tools and automated, pre-release testing process have also been overhauled and improved, as have our PDF reporting tools.

Commercial extension support

One of Watchful’s unique and powerful features is our support for commercial/paid Joomla softwares and central management of download IDs/licenses.

This past year we continued to add new paid extensions to our list of natively-supported add-ons. 

For single extensions, we added support for ZOO from YooThemeMedia Box from the Joomla Content Editor (JCE), and JCH Optimize.

Two new suites of software — representing a total of 10 extensions — were also added from Extly.com and chillcreations.com.

Last but not least was the release of our single sign-on plugin.

A busy year ahead

We’ve accomplished a lot in the last 12 months, and with our expanding team and user base, the next 12 months look to be even busier. 

In the short-term, our plans are to focus on moving the Joomla security and audit tool out of the beta phase, and to improve the Single Sign-On offering. 

Watchful history

If you’re interested in an overview of Watchful’s history, check out our Company page.

For a technical history, our anniversary/birthday posts are best: 1st birthday | 3rd birthday | 7th birthday | 8th birthday | 2020 year-in-review.


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