In this post, we will show you signs that your website has been hacked.
According to WebARX, about 30,000 new websites were hacked daily in the year 2019. This indicates the increasing rates of website hacks that occur on the web.
Website hack is an unfortunate experience. When your website is hacked, it has been accessed or taken over by someone else (the hacker) who possibly has injected malware or code to steal your sites’ credentials.
Without further ado, let’s show you signs that your website has been hacked.
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Signs Your Website Has Been Hacked
Here are seven signs that show your website has been hacked:
1. Google Alert
Websites are often linked to Google Search Console for better SERP rankings. Consequently, Google bots crawl the sites to discover new pages for indexing. If a website has been hacked, the bots won’t be able to crawl your web pages, and Google will send error notification alerts. In the notification alert, the primary cause of the crawl/index error will be stated. If it is a malware, a hack could be the cause.
2. Browser Warnings
If you visit your website on a web browser (especially Google Chrome) and you get a warning message that your site has malware, there is a possibility that it has been hacked.
Some browsers may refuse access to the website rather than letting you proceed. Furthermore, this is different from having an invalid SSL as the warning will be that of an insecure connection.
3. On-Site Errors
Usually, when you load your site URLs, it should take you to the correct webpage. However, when you get various server errors, it may imply that your site has been hacked.
Common errors relating to hacking are 4xx client and 5xx server errors. A 400 bad request might display if your site has malware while a 500 internal server error implies that your web server is hacked.
4. Invalid Login
Your site can be hacked without the hacker injecting any code. Mostly, hackers can get hold of your login credentials and change the details. When you try to login to the admin dashboard and you get an invalid login, something is wrong.
However, you can make a mistake, so endeavor to cross-check your login details. In fact, if your origin login credentials is invalid after several attempts, then your website has been hacked.
Most hackers carry out cross-scripting hacks. Such activity involves them redirecting your sites’ URL to some other website. Rather than seeing your web pages when you launch their URL, you are redirected to another site. This new site can be theirs, an advert site, or a parody site. With this, they can steal valuable information from your visitors to defraud them, which can further damage your site’s reputation.
6. Site is Offline
Web hosting companies do have specific security policies and tools that check the security state of websites on their server. If a hack is suspected on a particular site, it is likely to be taken offline. This prevents hackers from injecting other websites hosted on the same servers. In such a case, you are likely to be notified by your web host.
7. Unusual Traffic
When you start getting unusual traffic from odd websites, you should be wary as it may be a DDoS attack on your website. This is referred to as a ‘Traffic Spike’. Not to mention, hackers can also send loads of traffic using bots to steal your data.
How to Check Your Site for Hacks
A website scan is the best way to check whether your site has been hacked or not. Some ideal website scanners you can use includes:
All you have to do is to enter your site URL and run the scan. However, we recommend the Sucuri Site Check for a detailed security analysis of your website.
You can run an internal scan as well using cPanel Virus Scanner. With this scanner, you can scan your home directory, FTP space, and Web space.
How to Prevent Your Website From Hacks
To avoid being an unlucky victim of a hacker, follow these tips to prevent your website from being hacked:
- Use a secure password generator for your site credentials. A strong password should be up to at least 16 characters, alphanumeric, and include unique signs.
- Avoid nulled themes and plugins. Hackers usually release nulled themes and plugins, which give them unlimited access to your website.
- Scan your PC regularly for cyber threats. This will prevent you from logging in toy your website in the presence of Trojan horse or keyloggers.
- Ensure that your CMS platform, themes, plugins, and certificates are up-to-date. Also, if your website is custom-built, you can update your website technologies i.e. PHP version, etc.
- Ensure your website is secured with an SSL certificate. This will give you an HTTPS status that guarantees that your website is secure.
- Validate comments manually to prevent SQL injections. Comments by visitors should only appear on your website after you authorize them.
- Use third-party security solutions like Sucuri to protect your site from hacks.
There you go! Odd signs that show your website has been hacked.
As a website owner, you should always know your site’s security status. A hacked website is not a friendly scenario, and you can lose your site entirely.
If you detect suspicious hacking activities on your website, try to take security measures to get rid of them as quickly as possible. Also, ensure you backup your website files on a remote storage system as a precaution against website hacks. Furthermore, a security solution like Sucuri can help you to restore your hacked website.