Possible: your site has been hacked and you don’t even know it
According to Dave Keipert of Busines2Community Google blacklists over 70,000 websites every week. This is because they’ve been hacked and their site is now being used to send out malware. Before you run off and go look at your site, you need to know that there might not be any visible signs that your site has been hacked.
How to check if your site has been hacked
There is a free way to check if your site has been hacked provided by the company Sucuri. Simply type your website address into the search bar and it will perform a scan to see if your website is operating without malware. It will also tell you if your site has already been blacklisted by Google.
What Happens If Your Site Is Hacked?
Your hosting company may be the first to discover that your site is being used to send out spam. I had the unfortunate case of my oldest site being so badly attacked I had to take it off line for a very long time. That means that any links that were sent to it were dead and anyone trying to get my help could not find me. What is worse, is that once Google tried to index the site and discovered it was no longer published, they de-indexed it.
Everything that was done to try to get the site ranked by Google was lost!
If you discover that your site has been hacked, you don’t need to panic. You DO need to take care of it as soon as possible. This means getting it repaired swiftly. This is where Sucuri can again come to the rescue. When you use their monitoring service (about $15 per month) they will take care of any malware with a guarantee.
When I first started building and ranking websites, one of my sites was hacked. I thought my life and my career were over! I was very lucky to find Securi. They saved me and my client quickly and professionally.
How to prevent your site from being hacked
By far, the best protection for your website is to use a monitoring service like Sucuri but there are a few things you can do to give hackers a more difficult time.
Keep your WordPress site and plug-ins up to date.
WordPress is the best website platform to have as it does much of the SEO (search engine optimization) work for you. It is also a free platform where anyone can get the code and build on it. This makes it vulnerable as well. When your site is not routinely updated it can be one of the easiest sites for a hacker to target. WordPress sites have great plug-ins that make marketing your business super simple. Unfortunately these plug-ins are also doors into your site.
Change the location of your entry.
Instead of using the default wp-admin page to enter your website, change its location to one that a hacker would have a difficult time finding.
Make your password difficult
My mother used the password “password” on almost everything. I hope you don’t do that..if so change it now. Don’t use words. Hackers use sophisticated software that helps them decode passwords and they have a much easier time with real words. If you need your password to be easy to remember, try using the first letter of every word in a sentence. For example: I am the best plumber in Houston! Using that sentence, you can make the password, IatbpiH! It is very random and easy for you to remember.
Has your website ever been hacked? What did you do about it?