My Blog Was Hacked
Making money or sharing your opinion with your own online website used to be a dream for most people. Either you had to have a lot of technical know how or you had to pay a bundle to have it done for you. Now with the advent of user friendly CMS applications like Wordpress almost anyone can make a blog.
My story begins approximately two years ago. I had finally created my first Wordpress blog. I was so proud of myself. I had literally done it all with little to no help from anyone else. Sure I did a lot of referring to installation guides and forums, but at the end of it all it was just me. It was now time to open a clickbank account or maybe even commission junction, regardless of which one I needed to start making some money. It is one thing to share your opinion online, but site maintenance bills is something different. In order to share my opinions and allow others to do the same I had to cover the hosting and other additional cost.
A little over 2 weeks went buy until I had everything set up just the way I wanted. I was about to start my first Google adwords campaign and hopefully send some much needed traffic to my site. My clickbank referral codes where in place and I had been busy compiling an impressive array of articles I had written as well as opinions. I was a Blogger.
The next day. Well this is definitely a day I would like to forget. I woke up and made myself a coffee and proceeded towards my computer stand. I had a seat, logged on and I was a little surprised to say the least. My clickbank stats had read that there was not one single click to any of the products I had promoted. I thought that was definitely a waste of money. I had to revamp things. I changed up some keywords, reconfigured the ads and started again. One bad day was certainly not going to discourage me. The day came and went and I was very troubled to say the least. Nothing, not one click. I could see even a small conversion because traffic went to my site first and then hopefully visitors would click on my promoted links. Well I must have typed in something wrong. I went back to my site and tried to log in. I tried and tried but it didn't matter I was locked out. I even tried to reset the password but did not even receive an email. I tried to view source to see if the referral links had changed but the whole page came back encrypted. My heart sank. I could not believe my luck. I literally wanted to throw my mouse through the computer screen. I was losing it , I had to settle down, had to find out what happened.
My friend Michael is a webmaster, SEO expert, geek etc. Etc. He is my go to guy whenever I have a major problem. He was also the last guy I wanted to talk to because I felt like a failure. Maybe I had done something wrong. Maybe I asked for this some how. The last thing I needed was a "you should have known better" speech. So eventually Lord Michael came over and took a look for himself. Wouldn't you know this was 100 percent NOT my fault, this was an error on the part of Wordpress. As elated as that made me feel, I also felt defeated. I am no web designer, if Wordpress is flawed how am I going to build my own blog. At this point he told me to settle down. There are a lot of simple things you can do to protect yourself. Thank God, simple is good. I then had a long lesson in online security as it related to Wordpress. Since that day I have felt a lot better and I have also never had another incident. I really hope and pray this never happens to anyone who reads this. Below I have outlined a few pointers that will aid you into making your Wordpress site as secure as possible.
How to Secure you Wordpress Site
The first thing you need to do is upload the newest version of Wordpress. Wordpress has been working long and hard to make their newer applications as safe and secure as possible. Keep all your files up to date. Make sure that before you upload any plugins you check to make sure it is authentic and safe. Hackers have been known to develop their own Wordpress plugins and attach a backdoor to it. Only use Wordpress plugins from the Wordpress website. Upload a authentic Wordpress plugin that limits login attempts. This will limit a hackers abilty to access your site. Use common sense. Leaving user names on your system like Admin or using simple common passwords is an invitation to any hacker. Use a good Anti-Virus program and update it. An out of date Anti-Virus program is almost like not having one at all. Never store any passwords on your computer. If you think someone may have tampered with your site use a Free Website Malware Scanner. You will find several sites online that offer this.