There are a lot of performance best practices with Microsoft SQL Server that can add up to a significant impact; some of them involve the machine, some of them involve Windows. Some of them involve the SQL server instance, and some of them involve the database: many of the defaults when setting up a new SQL instance and database are suboptimal, probably for legacy reasons. (Thankfully, SQL 2016 finally improves all this!)
I've collected as much as I can here into a "one stop shopping" checklist. And you can always contact us for help!
In a perfect world, maybe CloudPets toys would be a positive example of the novel ways that the internet lets us keep in touch with those we care about. Instead, it's another disastrous example of "what not to do for security". Often it takes a very small amount of time and effort to drastically improve the resilience of a system, and perhaps more importantly, to minimize the possible scope of a breach.