Beware of Hackers: De-Indexed From Google

Posted by By at 26 April, at 15 : 24 PM Print

Beware of Hackers: De-Indexed From Google

It is as if each day is a lesson in life, today’s lesson is “keep your wordpress installations up-to-date or face the consequences.” Luckily wordpress is easy to upgrade and should be kept up-to-date at all times and plugins should be monitored for updates and security advisories or else…

You can find yourself out of favor with Google. We found this out at when we received an e-mail from google stating the site was being removed from google because it violated the terms of services….


Yeah, a day or two ago we got hacked and the site theme was modified to include hidden links to sites that broke the terms of service (and most moral values). A day after our notification our organic searches went from 800+ a day to 0.

Google has no warning messages, just a standard message that even considers what occurred as a problem, “This appears to be because your site has been modified by a third party. Typically, the offending party gains access to an insecure directory that has open permissions. Many times, they will upload files or modify existing ones, which then show up as spam in our index.”

They are very efficient about bring your traffic to a screaming halt and losing any ad revenue you make. We’re still waiting to see how long it ‘really’ takes to be re-included into their index. They send you a link where you can plead your case and ask to be re-included–they say it can take up to 30 days but sites on the Net seem to have folks getting back in within three days. We’re hoping it’s closer to three than to thirty.

Lesson learned. A few other sites I help run also were hacked but I fixed them before they were found by google, but a site that gets constantly scanned by google because of it’s great content is the site that will be de-listed first (go figure).

Although I don’t agree, I believe you should get at least a 3-day advanced warning to fix the issue, there isn’t much you can do against the mega-giant Google; you need google rank.

Here are some lessons you’ll want to keep in handy if you’re a blogger with a site that has mild to great traffic:

  • Monitor Security Advisories: Take them seriously, don’t wait until later to do the updates because later can be too late.
  • Perform Weekly Site Audits: You might be small but you should practice the work of the big boys, try to go through error logs, access logs or at least view your sites source in a browser once a week to check for hidden links.
  • Perform Weekly Backups: Run a backup and put the backup off-site each week (or more). Try to keep a site with up-to-date content staged on a secondary hidden site that you can quickly ‘diff’ and repair the changes. If you’re hacked this can save you hours of hunting for the problems.
  • Minimal Plugins: Only take the needed plugins for your CMS. If you don’t utilize them, disable them. Every plugin is an exploit waiting to happen and increases the chances of SQL injections and other badness.

Hopefully it won’t happen to you, however, the more popular your site is the more likely you’re going to be subject to an attack. Hackers don’t care if they only get links to their site from your hacked blog for a few days before your site is destroyed. It’s unfortunate people exist that have this type of attitude and lack of caring for others but it’s not going to change anytime soon so be prepared.

If you’ve been de-listed, read up on google’s help center.

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