Hackers are frequently able to exploit software that has been around for awhile using techniques and methods that have become known in the hackersphere over time.
No software is immune from hacking and everything created can be chopped up into pieces with alarming ease and speed once hackers get onto the job.
Of interest in this post is the software that you use in your web hosting space to manage and/or operate your website. The applications you run on your website are entirely your responsibility. Your host may provide you with numerous tools and facility to load software, but the bottom line is that you are responsible for it in every respect.
Many businesses use a content management system (CMS) as the foundation for their website. This is a great idea and provides many benefits to the user and to site visitors. However it is important that your CMS is kept up to date with the latest releases in order to remain secure. Some CMSs are easy to keep up to date. Others are not always so simple. Apart from the CMS itself there is also the issue of updating templates and third party add-ons and plugins. These additional products may or may not have a parallel update cycle. Free add-ons which were initially attractive are less likely to have timely updates than commercial products, although just because you paid for software does not guarantee that it will be updated quickly when required, or at all.
Incremental updates are normally fairly straight forward, but with the march of time updating your applications can become complex if not impossible. Bear in mind that it may well be easier and faster to redevelop your website with a completely new application foundation. If you are using one of the mainstream CMSs it is usually possible to find conversion tools that will minimise the time to migrate a website to a new system, but there is always some measure of pain. Proper planning prevents poor performance
If you do not maintain your software you will be hacked and you may not be able to reliably recover under any circumstances. Your organisation must have an update plan and allocate in-house or external resources to maintaining the website software up to date.
Many consultants can provide third-party webmaster services that will keep your site software currency maintained.
Digital Business Media provides webmaster services that will maintain your site software.