What are Nulled WordPress Themes & Plugins?
Nulled WordPress themes and plugins are basically pirated copies a paid version which is available unethically on the world wide web.
Not only does it cause great WordPress companies that invested a lot of time creating great plugins/themes, but most importantly it compromised the security of websites that are using these nulled WordPress themes and Plugins.
Quite often, the reason your web site get’s hacked is because of using nulled themes and plugins. As web site owners, you may not even be aware that your site is using these nulled plugins/themes, which is why it’s always important to use good/trusted developers or reputable agencies.
Here are some of the top reasons why you MUST avoid using nulled WordPress plugins and themes on your website.
In terms of website security, nulled plugins and themes are extremely dangerous to your website as they are known to carry malware.
This malicious code can spread across different files and even other websites on your server. These malicious codes may not be noticeable on the frontend as more often than not, they disguise itself which makes it harder for programmers to detect and clean up when your website is hacked.
If you’re not taking regular backups, you could even potentially lose all your websites data if your website is hacked. In addition to this, you risk your website being de-indexed from search engines for distributing malware.
The types of malicious code in which nulled themes and plugins can vary quite significantly. This can include code that steals information from your WordPress site and makes it available to hackers on the dark web.
This information could include your username, email address, and passwords. If you run an e-commerce website or a membership website, you also risk having personal information of your customers being leaked. Now, this can become quite costly to your business if this was to happen. Quite often, people get nulled themes and plugins because they can’t afford the cost. The price isn’t in fact that much when you compare against the number of risks that can occur and how it could actually end up costing you a lot more in the end run.
These kind of hacks are hard to detect and may go unnoticed as your WordPress site keeps functioning normally.
3. It’s Bad for SEO
Pirated WordPress themes and plugins can destroy your WordPress SEO. Nulled WordPress themes and plugins can add spam links to your website or hijack your users and redirect them to bad websites.
These things may not be noticeable visually as they are working in the background, hidden inside your code. Trust us though, search engines will be very quick to penalise your website by dropping your search ranking or even de-indexing your website completely!
What’s even worse is that it could take months to recover your websites SEO rankings…
4. Legal Issues
Many WordPress themes and plugins are open source, but some of them are sold with mixed types of licenses. This means that some parts of the code are protected by copyright laws and if you are using a nulled WordPress theme or plugin, then you don’t have the legal permission to do so.
What this means is that Pirated WordPress themes can result in data theft, data loss, or distribution of illegal material. All of these can lead to legal proceedings where you may end up paying huge sums to lawyers.
5. No Access to Updates
Most WordPress themes and plugins regularly release updates to fix bugs, add new features, and close security issues. Nulled WordPress themes and plugins cannot receive those updates because they don’t have a valid license key.
This leaves your WordPress site with an outdated version which will be less secure and possibly even ends up not working. WordPress itself regularly releases new versions and sometimes themes and plugins need to be updated to remain compatible with the latest changes. Since nulled theme or plugin can’t be updated, your website may start misbehaving or become inaccessible. In some cases, you won’t even know that there is an update available or even know if it’s compatible with the latest WordPress version.
Even the most experienced WordPress users need support and documentation to properly use some of the premium WordPress themes and plugins.
Developers of these products spend a lot of their time on providing support and creating documentation for their users. They even hire support specialists to answer questions and regularly add new tutorials.
If you are using a nulled WordPress theme or plugin, then you are on your own. You cannot ask the developers to help you out when you need help. You also don’t get access to documentation and tutorials because those are only available to users who purchase the plugins/themes.
7. Access to New Features
As we have already mentioned, WordPress themes and plugins are updated regularly and often these updates include new features. If you are using a nulled WordPress products, then you won’t be getting automatic updates, and you wouldn’t even know that there are new features available.
These new features can significantly improve your website and help you earn more money online. However, you will be totally unaware of any changes and will be stuck with an outdated version.
8. Unethical use Discourages Innovation
Some people may argue that some plugins and themes are just tiny bits of software, and quite simply, they will use nulled plugins and themes because they can’t afford the costs. However, this tiny piece of code is the result of someone’s skill, talent, and hard work. By using nulled software, you are taking away money from the creators.
Developers not only spend their own time writing code, but they also have to provide support, create documentation, make a website, hire support staff, and spend a lot of money to run their business. Using nulled software hurts their business and they end up losing money.
These unethical practices may discourage developers from creating new innovative products that can benefit millions of users!
9. The Abundance of Free Alternatives
There is no reason for anyone to use nulled WordPress themes and plugins. No matter which WordPress theme or plugin you choose, there is more than likely one or suitable free alternatives available for them.
For great WordPress themes, we tend to use ThemeForest, they offer a massively library of themes to choose from and more often than not, you will find a great theme which will require very little customisation to get a great website for your business up and running.
If you are looking for some great WordPress plugins you can use CodeCanyon, again, they have a massive stock of great premium plugins you can purchase if you can’t source a suitable free plugin from WordPress.org.
WordPress.org has thousands of free plugins and themes. Some of them are even better than the paid/premium products. Most importantly, you can use them legally with no burden on your conscience and without affecting WordPress community negatively.
Well, we hope you have found this article useful and can agree with the fact that nulled plugins and themes should not be used.
Do you have a website that has been affected by malware? Get in touch with us at [email protected] and we will put our full efforts to fix and recover your website!