What Your I.T. Department Can Learn From the I.T. Crowd





We’re in a dark and dank dungeon. It smells of sweat, drying milk, and ozone. A server ticks and hums one room over — did you hear something rustling in there?



You get a call from “upstairs.” Before they have a chance to tell you what’s going on, you say, “have you tried turning it off and on again?”

This probably sounds familiar. Not because I.T. departments actually look, sound, smell, and taste like this, but because it sometimes feels like that.

So, let’s take a look at the ultimate parody of the I.T. department and find out what Moss, Roy, and Jenn can teach us about running an I.T. department.



1. People Are Absurdly Predictable

It’s now such an old-hat joke it’s not even funny anymore. “Did you try turning it off and on again.” But it’s really the go-to fix for a lot of computer problems.

We all understand how a memory cache works and 99% of devices use one. Even if a client doesn’t understand the *how*, they still know to try restarting.

But for some reason, it escapes literally everyone’s mind.

This is why it’s most efficient to use a bot to free up 90% of your time dealing with I.T. problems in a business.

Roy’s solution was a taped recording. Comedy gold. But we now have the technology to outsource common Q&A to a machine. Simply set up a bot chat program on every computer and your clients can fix the simplest problems through that. This will leave you plenty of time to catch up on the last season of Mr. Robot.



2. Nobody in Your Office Understands the Network

You’re probably like Ross in that you get frustrated when people mess with the settings on their workstations turning off their “bloody firewalls” and such. But you’ve got to remember: most people don’t understand the network and how it works.

You’ve had education and experience in network services. Few others have.

You’re of course not going to convince a Jenn doppelganger that some black box is the internet, but you can explain why certain things are necessary in simpler terms. If you want people to follow network hygiene protocols, you have to explain why they’re there. And you have to do it in a way people will understand.

If someone doesn’t have a reason for a rule, they’re less likely to follow the rule.

3. Don’t Be a Giddy Goat: Fix Problems Early

You may think a problem is small. Deal with it later, you tell yourself. But often a small problem in the network might be indicative of a flaw in the process.

If you don’t examine the whole system and fix the bug now, it could become a larger debacle down the line. The whole network could go down or you could find yourself with a mess of corrupted data or local storage drives.

Also, don’t just fix the problem, figure out why it happened. Always source to the root of the problem.

How to find out what Themes and Plugins a WordPress Website uses (2018)

wordpress theme and plugin scanner




Have you ever wanted to find out which WordPress theme or Plugin a website is using? Often I get emails from readers asking us for help in finding the exact theme that a certain website is using. In this article, we will show you how to easily find out which WordPress theme a specific website is using.



When you are starting a new website, choosing the right theme is a very important decision.

Often you have ideas and inspirations that you have seen on other websites. In some cases, you may want your website to have almost the same layout and features as another website that you saw on the internet.

This could be possible specially if that website is using one of the thousands of free and paid WordPress themes available in the market.

And thankfully, it’s quite easy to find out which WordPress theme a website is using.

Method #1: WP SCANNER

One of the easiest way to detect WordPress theme used by a website is using our very own WordPress Scanner. It is an online tool that allows you to look up plugins and themes used by a WordPress website.



First, you need to visit WordPress Scanner website and enter the URL of a website you want to check.


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wordpress theme and plugin scanner


WordPress Scanner will first check if the website is using WordPress. If it is a WordPress powered website, then it will check which WordPress theme the website is using. It will also try to detect WordPress plugins used by the website.

After that, it will show you the results with more details about the plugins and theme used by the website.

Method #2: Manually find out

Sometimes website owners change the WordPress theme name. This stop tools like WordPress Scanner to detect which WordPress theme they are using.

However, there still might be plenty of clues hidden in the code that you can detect and find the WordPress theme they are using.

Let’s get started.



Each WordPress theme is required to have a style.css file. This file contains theme header which tells WordPress the name of the theme, theme author, URI, version, etc. It also contains CSS styles used by the theme.

To locate this file, first you need to visit the website. Right click anywhere on the screen and select ‘View Page Source’ from the menu.

View page source of a WordPress website

This will open the source code of the page you are viewing in a new browser tab. Now you need to find a line in the source code that looks something like this:

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<link rel='stylesheet' id='themename_style-css'  href='http://example.com/wp-content/themes/theme-name/style.css?ver=1.1.47' type='text/css' media='all' />

You can click on the URL in this line to open the style.css file.

On top of the style.css file, you will see the theme header block which contains information about the theme used by the website. Typically, it would look something like this:

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Theme Name:     Theme Name
Theme URI:      https://example.com
Author:         ThemeAuthorName
Author URI:     https://example.com
Description:    My Theme is a flexible WordPress theme designed for portfolio websites
Version:        1.1.47
License:        GNU General Public License v2 or later
License URI:    http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.html
Text Domain:    hestia
Tags: blog, custom-logo, portfolio, e-commerce, rtl-language-support, post-formats, grid-layout, one-column, two-columns, custom-background, custom-colors, custom-header, custom-menu, featured-image-header, featured-images, flexible-header, full-width-template, sticky-post, theme-options, threaded-comments, translation-ready

You may be able to find the Theme’s URL or Theme Author’s URL here which will lead you to the theme used by the website.

Finding The Parent Theme

Many WordPress websites use child themes to customize their websites. In that case, their theme header will contain information about the parent theme they are using.

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*
Theme Name:   My Child Theme
Description:  Just a child theme
Author:       Peter Smith
Author URL:   Write here the author's blog or website url
Template:     hestia
Version:      1.0
License:      GNU General Public License v2 or later
License URI:  http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.html
Text Domain:  my-child-theme
*/

In the above example, this header block has an extra ‘Template’ parameter in the theme header block. This template is the parent theme used by this website.

You can also find out the parent theme by looking at the website’s source code. There you will find another style.css file loaded from another theme. This other style.css file is the parent theme’s stylesheet and clicking on it will tell you which parent theme a site is using.

That’s all for now, we hope this article helped you learn how to find which WordPress theme a site is using. You may also want to see our ultimate list of the most wanted WordPress tips, tricks, and hacks.

 

How to check if a website is safe – 2018 / 2019

check if the website is safe to visit




Not sure if a website is safe to visit? Afraid a sketchy video streaming site might infect your PC? Looking for an e-commerce store to buy from and not sure which you can trust your credit card with? It’s good to be cautious, and it’s absolutely vital to check that a website is safe before sharing any personal information (e.g., credit card numbers, passwords, addresses, etc.). In this how-to, I’ll offer some quick and easy tips to help you avoid dodgy URLs and verify the trustworthiness of any website and if a website is safe.



 

Be sure you trust a site before entering any personal info.

#1  Use your browser safety tools

Today’s most popular web browsers already include security features to help you stay safer online. These built-in browser tools can block annoying popups, send Do Not Track requests to websites, disable unsafe Flash content, stop malicious downloads, and control which sites can access your webcam, microphone, etc.

Take a moment to review your settings now. Here’s how to find them:

  • Chrome:  Settings > Advanced > Privacy and security
  • Edge:  Settings > Advanced settings
  • Firefox:  Options > Privacy & Security
  • Safari:  Preferences > Security and Preferences > Privacy

#2  Double-check URLs

This really goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway: Before you click a link, make sure you know where it’s going to take you. Just mouseover over any link to verify the URL it’s really linked to.



Try hovering your mouse over this

Hover your mouse over the link above, but don’t click it. You should see the URL that it links to at the bottom-left of your browser: https://www.very-good-idea.com. Easy, right?

Make sure the URLs are spelled correctly, too. Most people only glance over text on the web. Hackers know this and will often substitute visually similar characters (e.g., “Yah00.com” instead of “Yahoo.com”) to trick you into visiting their phishing sites and unwittingly giving them your passwords, credit card numbers, and other private data. Don’t fall for this trick. It only takes a moment to verify a URL is safe. And it’s worth it.

#3  Check for HTTPS

HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) is the fundamental protocol for sending data between your web browser and the websites you visit. And HTTPS is just the secure version of this. (The “S” simply stands for “secure”.)

HTTPS is often used for online banking and shopping, because it encrypts your communications to prevent criminals from stealing sensitive information like your credit card numbers and passwords.

So how do you know if a site uses HTTPS? Check for the padlock in your browser’s navigation bar. If you see it, you know the site you’re on is using a trusted SSL digital certificate — in other words, your connection is protected.

Image of Google Chrome browser's address bar with the green padlock circled

If you don’t see the padlock, take your shopping elsewhere.



This isn’t a silver bullet, though. Some phishing websites could be using HTTPS to appear to be legitimate. But the main takeaway is this:  If a website doesn’t have that padlock, don’t enter your password or credit card number.

#4  Run an online website safety check

An objective website safety checker is great for quickly determining which sites are clean and which should be avoided. VirusTotal’s free website security checker is an easy-to-use example of this. Just copy/paste any URL into VirusTotal’s page and hit Enter. Boom! It’s that easy. Give it a shot. And be sure to bookmark the page to use later.

Image of the VirusTotal webpage where you can check if a URL is dangerous

VirusTotal will tell you if a website is dangerous.

#5  Whois lookup the domain owner

Need to know who’s behind a certain website? Do a whois (pronounced “Who is”) lookup to find out who owns the domain, where and when the site was registered, contact information, and more. It’s super easy to do, and you’ll feel like a private eye doing it. Try a whois lookup here.

Image of the Icann webpage, where you can search for info about who's behind a website

Enter any URL to learn who’s really behind the website.

#6  Call the company

Still not sure if the company is legit? Find their contact details and give them a call. Really, you can learn a lot by who answers the phone. If the number doesn’t exist — or if some teenage voice answers with “Dude?” — then something’s probably up. Just trust your gut.

Where do you find a website’s contact details? Look for a “Contact us” or “About us” link near the very top or very bottom of the homepage. Or try a Whois Lookup (tip #5 above) to see if that reveals a phone number.

#7  Install web security tools

Using AVG can also help you avoid dodgy websites. Download AVG AntiVirus for essential protection, including Web Shield to block malicious downloads and Email Shield to block malicious attachments. Or try AVG Internet Security free for 30 days to get our absolute best online protection, including Fake Website Shield to help you avoid phishing sites.


Secure your PC now

 

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