Recovering from Hacking

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My hacking story – and a plug for a great company

A few people have asked how I knew I was hacked. Well, last week my friend Rachana messaged me saying that her computer was giving her warnings when she tried to access my site. Since no one else had complained and this wasn’t happening to me, I honestly thought it was her computer – her firewall settings or something. Then over the weekend Debra told me she got a virus from my site. (So sorry, friend! And to any of you who had this issue!)

An techy friend of mine was able to fix the redirecting issue, which had been causing others to get the virus. But he recommended I have someone else scan it, as other areas were most likely infected. So I went to my hosting company, and honestly they were that helpful – just so, so. They basically said it wasn’t their issue, but to check with a certain company about repairing my site.

When someone you trust refers you to a company, you trust that company, right? So I allowed this supposedly reputable company to look at my site and awaited their bid. They bid me $1300!! But the customer service rep said he got me “a discount” and big me $800!! Are you kidding me??

Oddly enough I remained calm. My techy friend (referred to above) gave me a few options of how to salvage my site. The most likely candidate was A LOT of work. Eventually I decided I’d just create a new blog.

I was fully prepared to do this when Rachana connected me with another friend, who had recently had her blog hacked. This girl directed me to Sucuri, who charged me only $90 to fix my site and to continue monitoring it for the next year!!! Can you believe it?

What a scam that first company is! I don’t normally diss companies publicly (ie. blog), but I do want to make you aware that there are companies who will try to take advantage of you the way they tried to with me! Sadly companies like this exist. I’m thankful for honest, hard-working companies like Sucuri. I would recommend them!

What can you do to protect yourself from hackers?

  1. Have hard passwords! Uppercase, lowercase, numbers, punctuation, etc – and 8+ digits.
  2. Update your site. Using WordPress? Make sure you have the latest version. I didn’t.
  3. Don’t have your log-in bar on your blog.
  4. Back-up your site! And do it often. For WordPress, install the plug-in, WordPress Database Backup (or something similar). For Blogger, refer to this post for backup instructions.
  5. It can’t hurt to have a company, such as Sucuri, monitor your site. I don’t know enough about whether or not to say it’s necessary though.

There’s lots more. This is just a starting place.

Know another method of protection that I haven’t mentioned? Please share in the comments!

This is NOT a paid endorsement of any kind. I am just thankful for the service Sucuri provided me. If you ever find yourself in this place – and I hope you don’t – I’ll share the name of that other company with you. I just don’t have it here because I don’t want them coming after me…


 

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Comments

  1. I’m so sorry to hear that this happened to you but thankful that you were able to get it all resolved. I took the time a couple of months ago to back up my blog…but know that I need to do it way more often.
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