The Extra Challenges with Websites & Domain Names

We recently helped a client move into a new WordPress website. They were long overdue to make the change as their previous website was not responsive and was using an old contact form script that hackers had hacked.

Do you know what happens when your website gets hacked and you don’t take care of it promptly?

Well, if it goes on long enough then Google Chrome browser puts up a message in the search results for your domain name that says, “This site may be hacked.” This is not something one wants to see associated with your domain name.

You do not want to go down this path! Maintain your websites! This means visiting them weekly and clicking around to make sure the site looks as it was intended to.

If you have WordPress website then you have an entire punch list of:

  1. Click into the Control panel weekly or at least twice a month and clear out comments and check for WordPress, Theme and plugin updates and make those updates after you have verified that they are legitimate. Before you leave the site backup your content
    – And yes, a plugin can also be hacked so check on the details of the plugin update to make sure it is real.
  2. If you don’t have it already install WordFence. This plugin does a good job of scanning the website and it will send an email to the file in the system if it finds something “odd”
  3. Some website hosting groups also offer malware scanning services and the cost is quite reasonable
  4. Consider having an automatic backup service from your hosting company
  5. And every time you do the above check-up, also send yourself an email from your website just to make sure the contact form is working.
  6. And if you have not added it yet, add your https hosting – LEARN MORE

To help this client fixed the hack message we activated the Google Search Consule and then built a new website that cleaned out the malware. Once the new website was built then using the Search Consule we communicated with Google and re-submitted the domain name to be reviewed by Google. Once they checked the domain name and website and determined that the problems were gone, then they removed the message from the search results.

Need we say that having the message in search results of “This site may be hacked” really, really impacts one’s website traffic.

WordPress websites are so easy to maintain it is very easy to get sloppy and not respect the technology behind WordPress.

“The Extra Challenges with Websites & Domain Names” is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License.

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Author: Karin Hall

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