Created on Thursday, 20 March 2014 09:0020 March 2014
What happens when a site gets hacked? Well, every website on the Internet is now a potential target for a hacking attack and no one is actually fully protected against a headache of this kind. So if a site gets hacked, it would be unfair to blame the site owner.
Most hosting providers today though, prefer not to engage with hacked sites as this means plenty of troubles for the server, including infected data and excessive server loads. It usually results in the customer becoming a 'persona non grata' whose account is suspended until the issue is solved.
What if the customer is not able to deal with the issue, as is most often the case?
This is where the human side of a technical service comes into play. Experience has taught us that putting more effort into solving an issue means a better pay off than avoiding that extra effort and therefore, letting the customer go risking the chance of him/her never coming back.
This is why, we are now in a position to offer help with hacked sites within reasonable limits.
When our technical support team receives a report that your site has been hacked, they first try to get in touch with you and to provide advice on how the issue can be solved quickly.
If you are not experienced enough to follow the instructions, our technicians then will take the case in their hands.
Please keep in mind though that providing help with hacked sites is not an official service-level guarantee.
For your reference, we are copying below the instructions our team has prepared for when a hacker hits your site.
Dealing with hacked sites
instructions from the technical support team
Take your site offline
Take your site offline temporarily, at least until you know that you have fixed the issue.
Make a damage assessment
It is a good idea to figure out exactly what the hacker(s) were after.
Were they looking for sensitive information?
Did they want to gain control of your site for other purposes?
Look for any recently modified or created files that you cannot recognize or that you haven’t edited yourself.
Check for any suspicious activity inside your Web Hosting Control Panel, such as newly created email accounts, FTP accounts, etc.
Determine the scope of the problem — do you have other sites that may be affected?
Recover your content
The absolute best thing to do here is a complete re-installation of all the applications using a fresh and updated copy acquired from the respective script vendor. It is the only way to be completely sure that you have removed everything the hacker may have done.
After the fresh re-installation, use the latest backup that has been made to restore your site. Do not forget to make sure that the backup is clean and free of hacked content too.
Update any software packages to their latest versions. This includes things such as blogs, content management systems, or any other type of third-party software installed.
Change your passwords – the application’s admin password, the hosting account’s password and the FTP passwords.
Restore your online presence
Get your site back online and keep an eye on it for a while, as the hacker(s) may attempt to make a new attack.