Joomla security improvements accompany the new Watchful dashboard

This is the second part in a 3-part series on the all-new Watchful. See also part 1 — Joomla upgrades — and part 3 — usability.

One of the central features of Watchful is the ability to monitor critical files in your Joomla web site. Modifications to these files might indicate the presence of an intruder or unauthorized access.

Thus, we take Joomla security very seriously and are constantly looking for ways to improve.

Joomla security improvements

In the latest release of the Watchful Client, we have added 256-bit encryption so that communications between your remote sites and your Watchful dashboard are safe even if intercepted by unauthorized third-parties.

The latest Watchful client is required for this additional security — as well as the other new features — so please update all your sites as soon as possible from the Watchful Dashboard or directly on the site via the standard Joomla installer.

In addition to improved security of the Watchful system, we’ve also added an exciting new feature — the ability to scan your Joomla site for malware!

We’ve partnered with malware and security experts Sucuri to provide an integrated solution for detecting malware.

To start a scan from your Dashboard, select the wrench icon to display the available tools and select Malware Scan.

You can also scan from your site details page as shown in the following screenshot:

Sucuri malware scan

Scans take between 10 and 60 seconds (depending on the site/server) and once complete the results will be displayed. 

If all goes well, you’ll see a great result as shown below. However, if malware has been detected, you’ll want to start investigating and cleaning up the site. 

While many of our customers can clean their own infected sites — we even have some basic guidelines in our knowledge base — the malware removal process can be a long, tedious and often fraught with numerous false-positives. 

Thus, we recommend that sites infected by malware should be cleaned by experts like Sucuri.

Sucuri malware scan results

What’s next?

In the next article, we’ll examine the usability changes we implemented in the new Watchful Dashboard.


Enoch Lavender
Watchful provides a clear-cut overview of my web sites, enabling me to easily keep them up-to-date with the latest Joomla/components updates as I choose. If I need support, their support is quick and effective. Enoch Lavender /