Hello Friends. An unfortunate event took place on Thursday, August 16th, 2018 during a routine server maintenance outage.
As I posted on YouTube, I am now the sole owner of WiBit.Net and was doing a review of the finances and infrastructure as part of the transition. Over the years, we have been pretty hands off with the infrastructure and mostly had system admins manage our servers.
Since the business is transitioning over to me, I was left to manage the remains of what many different hands have touched over the years. And the main database server needed a back up and an instance type change. We had the server worked on, only to hear shortly after the scheduled outage that the database was gone. This news came as a tremendous shock.
I brought in an additional expert and AWS Support to help assist with the situation and we discovered that a previous system admin had mounted the database on an Instance Store Volume instead of an EBS volume (if you know AWS you’ll know what I’m talking about) and when the server was taken down all the data on the store was removed. Unfortunately, there was no way to recover it.
This is obviously terrible news for me, especially during my first days taking the company back as my own since I founded this website in my college apartment in 2004.
As the evening moved on I was able to locate a database snapshot from December 12th , 2016. Sadly, this is the most recent copy of the entire database that is available.
I want to be extremely clear: There was no data breach. No data was stolen. The data was lost when the server was shut down as a result of poor handling of the infrastructure configuration by the previous team that managed the hardware. The team working on the server on August 16th did not discover this highly obscure configuration until it was too late.
Here is what I have done:
The website has been brought back up on brand new hardware to my specifications, with no outside influence. I restored the December 2016 database snapshot and put the website back online. If you are reading this, depending on when you are reading it, you may or may not be able to navigate the entire site because I am doing tests of the infrastructure and the database backups. I want to make sure that these mistakes do not occur going forward, as I will take a very active role in server administration from now on. Even if a system administrator works on our server infrastructure, no changes will be made without my clearance, quality control, or supervision.
Over the last few months, I was working behind the scenes to build the WiBit.Net brand, expand the website, and preparing more content for you to enjoy after a very long hiatus. This was a terribly unfortunate event which has resulted in a setback for my plans. On top of that, this situation is a sad moment for me personally. However, I intend to prevail and I hope all of you will come along with me.
Once the website is opened back up, some of you may notice that your accounts are missing, your passwords won’t work, or your account is associated with an old email address. This is because we had to use the December 2016 data. You may need to re-register or do the “forgot my password” process. If you have any issues with signing back into your account, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Here is how I am going to make it up to you, all of you:
Those of you that were Paid Sponsors of the site, I am extremely grateful for your support! Without you we don’t exist. Since we unfortunately cannot populate the database with recent sponsorship information, the site will not recognize you as a Sponsor. I apologize greatly for that. But I will make it up to you! In fact, I will make it up to all of you. The site content will be open to all for the next 2 months. That way those of you that were sponsoring us on a monthly plan can continue to access the content you paid for, and those of you that may want to sponsor us can access content you couldn’t before. If you were in the middle of a yearly sponsorship please contact us at [email protected] and we will individually work with you on a case by case basis. There are email records of your sponsorship that we can access via our outgoing [email protected] email account.
After the 2 month period concludes I will be offering sponsorships at a discount for a while, and at the same time try to expedite some new content to incentivize sponsors to come back and welcome new ones to our community.
The database will be backed up on a more regular schedule. The last team did not manage our server very well at all, clearly. I, personally, am extremely upset with the events that took place. As I write this, I have been working 24x7 for days with no sleep. I am visibly upset to the point of shaking because I really care about this community and WiBit.Net. I care about WiBit.Net in more ways than many people may ever know. This was my little baby that I started when I was a college kid drinking beer and having fun with my friends, and to me, seeing it in pain like is soul crushing.
I hope you can bear with me while I manage this crisis and help us out as WiBit.Net moves beyond so that we can grow and be a better business moving forward.
Thanks to all of you from the bottom of my heart,
Kevin from WiBit.Net