A “POODLE” on the loose – but your data is safe!

Recently you may have heard of an Internet security vulnerability called the “Padding Oracle On Downgraded Legacy Encryption” – or the “POODLE” vulnerability for short (and additional cuteness).

We want to reassure you that information stored in your DonorPerfect, WebLink,  DonorPages and SafeSave systems was never at risk with this exploit. Our team received early notice, researched the issue, and ran tests to verify that this vulnerability did not exist within our infrastructure and applications.

While Poodles of the 4-legged variety can pop up nearly anywhere these days (often in a young starlet’s handbag), this Poodle showed up and exploited a vulnerability in an 18-year old web encryption standard called SSL 3.0, that is still supported on many browsers for the sake of backwards compatibility with old systems. The good news is this was not an easily exploited threat. A hacker would likely need to be skilled, have privileged network access to your account, and be quite patient, to execute an attack using this vulnerability. Still, it was not impossible that a hacker could lure you to a carefully crafted web page, hop onto your network, and read certain information such as cookies from your browser– information that might allow them access to online information you might have accessed.

What can you do to prevent falling victim to hacking attempts like this? First, stay current in your technology. Keep all of your computer software current – especially your browser. You can make it even easier on yourself by using a browser like Firefox or Chrome that allow updates to be applied automatically so you don’t need to remember to update them. Safari and Internet Explorer can be updated through regular system updates.

Next, disable SSL3.0 on your browser until it’s patched (or until you need it) - this link can walk you through it.  And make sure you regularly check for patches for your operating system too. Don’t presume that just because you have an Apple Macintosh that you aren’t vulnerable to security issues. This was a vulnerability that, like Heartbleed, could affect all operating systems including Macs.

We want you and your browser to have a long and happy relationship with us here at DonorPerfect. But this time we’re going ask you to leave the Poodle outside.

by Tom Gimpel

Oct 30 14

Announcing a Simplified Verify Address and Beta Testing

Improved Verify Address Feature with Fewer Clicks on One Screen for Faster Data Entry


DonorPerfect’s Verify Address feature has helped you determine if the millions of addresses you enter every day are accurate. However, it took far too many clicks and navigated you through too many separate screens. In this release, we redesigned the feature so that you can do everything from one screen.DPO_Verify_Address

When you click Verify Address, DonorPerfect will check to see if your address exists anywhere in the United States or Canada. Then, you’ll be able to choose from a list of suggested matches that were found. Without leaving the screen, you can now see a preview of what the validated address will become without unnecessarily navigating through screens.

Easily Search for Batch Entry 2.0 Templates



You’ve seen this Search box throughout other areas of DonorPerfect but now you can search for your templates on the Batch Entry 2.0 screen. The streamlined data entry feature just got a streamlined template page.



Tool Tips in Entry Screens

DPO_Help_Text_ExampleOur design team got their hands on a few more areas of DonorPerfect to improve their look and feel. Throughout the grids that display a list of Gifts, Pledges, Export Templates and even Filters, you’ll notice an improved format of help-text. It will now be more clear that the trash can icon will delete a record or a column header will sort the information.

DPO_Edit_IconAnother improvement was made to the icon of all icons. Yes, the Edit icon is being replaced with a blue pencil. We hope you find it easier to recognize and use this featu throughout practically every screen in DonorPerfect.

In this release, we also made some other improvements, for example, our Import Utility now recalculates membership gifts. For a complete list of all of the changes to DonorPerfect today, see our Release Notes.


The Future of DonorPerfect

As those of you who came to our annual conference already know, we’ve been working on some major improvements to DonorPerfect that we can’t wait to show you. But, we’re only giving exclusive pre-release Beta Testing access to those of you who have a Premium or Full Support package, have our payment processing suite, and are willing to provide feedback on the new features.

  1. Integrated Credit Card Swipe from Anywhere – Our free DonorPerfect Mobile app will soon have the ability to swipe a credit card, process it quickly and securely, and even track the gift within the donor’s record. Say goodbye to importing from another system and join the Beta Test.
  2. Recurring Payments Are Easier Than Ever with Our New EFT – Our current EFT feature has been overhauled to make a recurring gift program even easier to manage. We’ve streamlined the submission process, you’ll know before a payment is submitted that it might not go through, and you can easily notify your donors if a payment fails for any reason. Join the Beta Test and manage your most loyal donors with ease.
Josh Nelson
by Josh Nelson

Oct 27 14

#GivingTuesday Webinar – Moving the Needle

Have you ever wondered if #GivingTuesday is just another made up holiday on the calendar, or if it really impacts philanthropy?

Based on research of over 500 organizations whose giving was tracked for the last three years, the positive effect of #GivingTuesday is undeniable!

Attend our free webinar on Wednesday, October 29, 3 – 4 PM (EST) to learn why, and how you can make the most of this year’s #GivingTuesday.

Moving the Needle: The Success and ROI of #GivingTuesday

In this exciting webinar, you’ll learn:

  • The basics of #GivingTuesday from the founder himself, Henry Timms, Executive Director of the 92Y.
  • Does #GivingTuesday cannibalize end-of-year giving, or does it raise overall giving?
  • Did nonprofits who participated in #GivingTuesday outgrow their peers? The results may shock you!
  • How did actual nonprofits increase their giving and attract new donors?  You’ll hear from three different nonprofit organizations on how they capitalized on the success of #GivingTuesday.
  • We’ll also take your questions for anyone on the panel.
This webinar will take place on Wednesday, October 29, 3 – 4 PM (EST). Space is limited.

Don’t miss out on this important event! I hope to see you there, and feel free to forward this invitation to any nonprofits or constituents that may be interested.


Click here for more #GivingTuesday tips.

by sgoldenberg

Oct 24 14

Excellence in Fundraising Award Winners

Five nonprofits were recognized with an Excellence in Fundraising Award during the annual DonorPerfect Community Network Conference (#DPCNC14). Constant Contact, a DonorPerfect partner for over 10 years, was the proud sponsor of awards. Here is the list of winners:

Fastest Growing Nonprofit – When nonprofits apply the best fundraising techniques towards their mission, they will grow.

Best Donor Retention – It’s much easier, cost-effective, and more sustainable for nonprofits to retain a donor than to find a new one.
Winner: Athenaeum of Philadelphia

Best Recurring Donation Program – A donor who gives regularly will most likely give more and remain a committed partner of a nonprofit longer than those who don’t. Especially in times of uncertainty, recurring giving guarantees future revenue.
Winner: Fabretto Children’s Foundation

Fastest Acknowledgements – Whether a nonprofit thanks donors with a handwritten card, a phone call, or an automated mail merge, the most important factor is that they send something and send it fast. This timeless appreciation for donors will continue to show just how much they mean to the organization, and is vital to maintaining a long relationship.
Winner: Bucks County Community College

by sgoldenberg

Oct 22 14

Fundraising Methodology Improves Results

Donor management software is a great tool for helping nonprofits achieve success by following a fundraising methodology.  In the end, it’s only as good as the data and time you put into it, but if properly used, it can help you measure success, execute on your plan, improve performance, save time, and improve your results.

Here’s a great example of how a donor management system provides a systematic way to help improve fundraising success. Greg Steinberger of Hillel at the University of Wisconsin – Madison said:

“At first, we weren’t really using all of DonorPerfect’s features – it was just a place to hold our data. But we became more serious about following the fundraising methodology DonorPerfect has developed. Over the years, we created all the flags, mail codes and solicitation codes that are the core of the system. This helps with our targeting of solicitations, follow-up activities and the evaluation of our fundraising efforts.” 

“Now, no matter what the solicitation, we always enter the results back into DonorPerfect. For example, we set up future contacts if we’re unable to reach them over the phone. And when a pledge or gift is received, the data is entered and DonorPerfect automatically generates the pledge reminders and gift acknowledgments.” 

The Results?increase

“Since then, we have quadrupled our donor database. Last year, we had roughly 2,500 gifts, a record number. We’ve raised the $14 million for the new building thanks to the successful capital campaign, and now we’re completing the final phase, which is the $3 million endowment. This is in addition to raising the funds we need to cover our regular expenses. I can honestly say we would not have had all this success without DonorPerfect.” 

You can read more about their story here: www.donorperfect.com/hillel 

The right tools, coupled with a winning formula from strategy to execution to measurement to adjustment to evaluation, will help you improve results for your mission.

by sgoldenberg

Oct 10 14