When “This Site May be Compromised” Happens

We’ve all been there.  When searching on Google, you come across a site where Google warns, “The Site May be Compromised”.

This Site May be Compromised

Besides a loss of rankings, what exactly does that mean, and what do you do when it happens to your site??

Well, you’ve probably been hacked, and Google is protecting its users from potentially malicious content.  If that’s the case, Google offers up some help, and even a url to visit, http://www.google.com/safebrowsing/diagnostic?site=www.example.com (where www.example.com is your website).  Unfortunately, that doesn’t always give you any insight into what’s going on, and many times all you’ll see is “This site is not currently listed as suspicious.”  But that doesn’t solve the problem at all.

So what other steps can you take?

1) Change your user names and passwords on dashboard and FTP logins.  Some hacker probably figured it out, so that’s how he got in.

2) Look for suspicious content in your source code.  This is what I’ve been seeing a lot of recently, where hackers are posting hidden text and hidden links, usually in less-than-reputable industries such as payday loans, gambling, and male pills.  Here’s the type of content you might find:

hacked site

another hacked site example

3) Audit the site.  You’re losing money every day from a loss of rankings and prospects being scared to visit your site.  Time to get it fixed.

I hope this helps.

Has your site been hacked before?  What did you do to fix the problem?