It is difficult to know what to do if your blog is hacked. A while ago, my blog was hacked and I don’t mind revealing that I was in a bit of a panic when I realised what had happened. Here is what I did to get my website up and running again.
How to Know if Your Website has been Hacked
It is important to be able to identify if your website has been hacked. Nowadays, hackers are very sneaky and it is sometimes difficult to tell, at least to start with anyway.
I stated noticing things were a bit strange with my website. There was something happening on it but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. Nothing worked first time, including my content calendar loading and having to click on everything a couple of times before it would work. At first, I assumed it was my broadband connection so I switched my router off and on again to see if it would help. I also cleared my cookies and cache on my Internet Explorer. Logging out of my WordPress website seemed like a logical step so I did that too.
These posts five ways to tell if your website has been hacked and How to find out if your WordPress site has been hacked are both very helpful when establishing if your blog has been hacked.
The Wolf series of short films by HP Studios on YouTube is also something to keep in mind when thinking about protecting your website. (These videos are very interesting, in my opinion. I enjoyed watching them).
Issues when Logging onto my WordPress Blog
When I tried to log back on again, I simply couldn’t. I knew my login details and had tried to put them in a couple of times, in case my fingers had hit the wrong keys on the keyboard. It was very strange as this had never happened before. I checked my website, as if I were a visitor and it showed an error message on my laptop and it showed my website as normal on my iPad.
At this point, I was starting to panic. I had a blog post that I’d promised to write by a certain time and this deadline was getting closer. Thankfully, my host helped immensely and my website was back online within a day. Phew!
What to do if Your Blog is Hacked
Here are the steps you could take if your blog has been hacked:
- Contact your host. My host, iPage, was very helpful and explained my options well. If you are unsure of how to fix the problem yourself, your host can offer to fix it for you (sometimes at cost, depending on your host).
- Run a scan on Securi or Wordfence.
- Run Malware Bytes on your computer/laptop to check that this is free of malware.
- Pay for SiteLock to fix your website and to continue to prevent being hacked in the future.
- Make sure you update your themes and plugins as soon as an update is available. Even those that you don’t use anymore. Plugin and theme vulnerabilities are a common way for hackers to access your website.
Has your website or blog ever been hacked? Is there anything else you could add that would help to prevent hackers accessing your website?
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