Case Study: What To Do When Your Website Gets Hacked

Hacked Site

It’s happened many times before and it just happened again this week, one of my sites got hacked. How do I know? Now when I visit the site I get a malware warning and taking a quick look I can see something’s not right. When your website is hacked don’t expect to see the attacker take your site down or make any overtly visible changes like in the image above. Most of the time attackers will hack your site for their benefit and hop it takes you as long as possible to figure-out what happened.

Many hackers now focus on injecting links onto your site so that in they get the link juice, while you are none the wiser. Unfortunately, these spammy links can impact the ranking and performance of your site. Also, if you’re getting a warning when you visit the site, so are your visitors which could mean lost business as well.

The first time one of my sites was hacked I freaked-out. I began searching on Google and doing everything I could to learn how to solve the problem. Sometimes it would take days and 10+ hours of my time to get things back to normal. That was before I was running my business as a business, and I was instead in self-employed mode where everything fell onto my plate.

Now, when one of my sites gets hacked I go directly to an expert I’ve been using for years. The expert I’m talking about here is Jesse from AdminDaily and apart from being an awesome web designer and developer, he’s also amazing at fixing hacked WordPress sites. Jesse has tackled some major problems for me in the past including this blog itself being hacked a couple of years ago!

I recommend using an expert like Jesse the same way that I recommend using a lawyer when you get into legal trouble. Unless you really know what you’re doing you might not fix the problem completely, and either way, you’ll definitely end-up wasting a lot of your time when a pro can do it in a tenth of the time with far better results.

So if your site gets hacked, take a deep breath and know that it’s going to work-out. Then contact an expert like Jesse, the peace of mind alone will make a big difference, and of course having your site back to normal as quickly as possible is critical. As we speak Jesse is working on fixing the site that got hacked this week and with any luck I’ll be back up and running in no time. I used to be panicked when something like this happened, now I know it’s just part of life and what’s important is having a good solution for if/when it does happen.

(Photo Credit)

{ 4 comments… add one }

  • Matthew Hunt March 24, 2012, 1:57 pm

    Websites get hacked all the time.  I manage over 100 sites and at least one a month gets hacked.  We follow a simple approach to have everything backed up, so we can have site backup in under an hour.  I hate those stupid hackers!  I wish they’d get a life! 

    Reply
    • Morgan Linton March 24, 2012, 3:58 pm

      Agreed! With over 220 sites we also get hacked constantly, we do put more time into securing our top sites so it is more rare that these get hacked.

      I too wish these hackers would get a life!

      Reply
  • Jesse March 26, 2012, 10:37 am

    Once again Morgan, Thanks for the mention.. I hate seeing things like this happen but am glad I could get it sorted for you.

    Reply
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