empted to use a nulled WordPress themes or plugins?
Honestly, we get the temptation. Truly, we do.
But before you install them on your WordPress site, there are consequences that you need to consider.
In this article, we’ll talk about:
- When you should and shouldn’t use nulled WordPress themes and plugins;
- How nulled themes and plugins can damage your business permanently;
- And a viable workaround that you can use to create a kickass WordPress website;
Although it’s free upfront, nulled WordPress themes and plugins (better known as pirated software) can cost you a lot.
Getting hacked is just one reason why you shouldn’t use nulled software on your website.
We’ll talk about the key reasons you should avoid nulled themes and plugins altogether. We will also show you how to test new plugins or themes for malware, and give you great alternatives to nulled software.
When should you use nulled themes and plugins?
In our honest opinion, there’s only one good time to use nulled WordPress themes and plugins. If you’re about to pitch a website design or feature to a client using a premium theme or plugin then it makes sense to use the nulled version to create a sample.
This way, if the project gets approved, you can charge the client for the premium versions. If doesn’t get approved, you suffer no losses to your business.
Now that you know when to use nulled WordPress themes and plugins, it’s time to talk about what you shouldn’t be doing.
Let’s dive in.
What Are Nulled WordPress Themes And Plugins?
Nulled themes and plugins are pirated versions of their legitimate versions. But WordPress software is often freely distributed, so what does ‘pirated’ mean in this context?
Every premium WordPress plugin or theme has a license which limits the use of this software to only one website. But there are tech-savvy people who find ways to modify the license so that it can be used on more than one website.
The modified versions are called a nulled WordPress themes and plugins.
5 Reasons To Avoid Using Nulled WordPress Themes and Plugins
A broken license should be reason enough to stay away from nulled software. But there are other severe consequences to worry about. We discuss the top reasons why you shouldn’t use nulled themes and plugins:
1. Your Site Can Be Hacked
Nulled WordPress themes and plugins are notorious for being malware-infected.
The scariest lie often sold is that people pirate software out of goodwill so that everyone can have access to it. It’s easy to believe it because you benefit from it. But there’s always a price to pay.
Hackers can easily hide malware in nulled WordPress themes and plugins and distribute it to thousands and thousands of unsuspecting users. So nulled software is often malware-infected, and just waiting to be activated.
Once you install the plugin or theme on your site, the malware infects your site and creates a backdoor that grants hackers access to your website.
So when you use a nulled WordPress themes and plugins, you are literally opening doors for hackers to enter your website.
If you would like to understand more about Malware Issues with a WordPress Site checkout our guide.
2. You Risk Security Flaws And Vulnerabilities
There are ways to scan nulled WordPress themes and plugins to check for malware. We detail this later.
Unfortunately, even if it’s not infected, it’s still not safe to use.
Developers of WordPress, as well as those of themes and plugins, toil away at improving and developing their software. Sometimes, bugs and security vulnerabilities creep in.
Once discovered, developers usually release a patch within a few hours. These patches are released in the form of plugins & Theme updates. Users receive alerts to update their software. The new version replaces the old version and the vulnerability is fixed.
If you’re using a nulled version, and the software is shown to have a vulnerability, you won’t be able to update the software because you’re disconnected from the developer.
Additionally, once new versions are released, details of the vulnerability are made publicly available in the changelogs of these plugins and themes.
3. You Won’t Get Any Support From The Developer
Generally, plugins and themes can be installed and used without any help or support. But there are times when you need guidance. Developers of premium plugins and themes offer support in which they answer customer’s questions and solve any issues they may be facing with the software.
So what happens if you face any issues with nulled WordPress themes and plugins that only the developer can address? To state the obvious, since you’re using an illicit version, you most certainly won’t be able to contact the developer for help.
4. Compatibility Issues & No New Features
Most developers that create plugins and themes for WordPress are very active and constantly take measures to improve their software.
Over time, they add new features, improve the user interface, patch security flaws, and eliminate bugs.
Most importantly, they update their software to be compatible with the latest version of WordPress.
Take, for instance, BlogVault, our backup plugin. It was first launched nearly a decade ago. Over the years, we have introduced new features such as White-labeling Solution, Uptime & Performance Monitoring, etc.
Nulled WordPress themes and plugins cannot be updated directly. So, there are several compatibility issues over the years and you miss out on any new features.
We have also constantly updated the plugin to ensure that it works seamlessly with every new WordPress version. Each time we release an update, the user receives a notification on their dashboard.
But if you are using nulled WordPress themes and plugins, you will never receive the update. This means you won’t receive new features nor will the plugin be fully compatible with the new WordPress version.
5. It Discourages Development
Plugins and themes take WordPress sites to new levels of performance, design, and functionality. Developers are passionate about their creations and spend time, energy, and money developing and maintaining them.
Nulled WordPress themes and plugins are discouraging to developers as their hard work is stolen from them. Business that should be rightfully theirs is taken away.
We recommend using free legitimate alternatives instead of opting for nulled versions. There’s a plethora of free WordPress plugins and free WordPress themes. These plugins and themes are more than sufficient to create a highly-functional and beautiful-looking site.
If you’ve already installed nulled WordPress themes and plugins on your site, we suggest deleting them and finding an alternative.