If you have a business long enough, someday your site will be hacked. You can put in security and monitor your site all you want but once you get popular enough, hacking is bound to happen. So whilst you need to do whatever you can to keep it from happening, it also means that you should be prepared for when it does happen. This post is about how to recover from a site hack.
8 Ideas To Help Recover From A Site Hack
- Be Calm – It is stressful to realize your site has been hacked. You’re worried about your visitors having viruses or malware installed on their computers and your liability for it. You’re worried about any financial information that could have been taken depending on the type of site you have. But, it happens, so you might as well remain calm and do what it takes to fix it.
- Gather the Info You Need – You’re going to need all your logins for your hosting, your content management system, a copy of all weblogs, FTP access, and any backups for your support team, or use yourself if you’re going to do it yourself.
- Call Your Support Team – If you don’t have a professional at the ready to deal with these situations, then you should. You don’t have to have someone on staff or pay a monthly fee if you don’t want to, but you should at least know who you’ll call if something like this happens. Having said that, monthly support fees can eliminate a lot of the stress of this happening.
- Take Your Website Offline – The moment you realize your site is infected, it's best that you take your site offline. You want to protect your audience. You can put up a page for them that gives them instructions on securing their computers and that you were hacked, so that they know what is going on and how you’re doing with it.
- Scan Your Computer for Malware and Viruses – Sometimes hackers trick users into downloading malware and viruses on their computers. Therefore, you should double check your computer and warn your audience to do so as well.
- Look at Your Backups – If you can determine when your site was infected and you have a previous backup, you can install the backup and then redo the changes that you made since the site hack.
- Look at Software Extensions – Sometimes hackers use software extensions to break into your website. Always check that everything is up to date so that you can close off any vulnerabilities from hackers.
- Research Your Plugins and Custom Code – If you have a lot of plugins, free or purchased apps that add functionality to your site, or custom code, check them for potential holes and ways for hackers to breach your site through them. Replace plugins or get them fixed.
To prevent future hacks, install harder security on your site and invest in a monitoring program of some sort. Update your site hosting to include SSL, invest in website security like SiteLock, and keep your website updated.
If you have WordPress your site is already pretty secure but there are additional things you can do. Adding a good security plugin like Wordfence (see link below) will extend your security options and give you more control.
Whatever your security efforts, things happen. It is always good to have a recent backup ready to restore to get past the problem. A good backup is always the best way to recover from a site hack. WP Clone and Updraft Plus are two that I recomment. Using both is a good idea.
To Help You Prevent And Recover From A Site Hack
- Wordfence Security Plugin
- WP Clone Manual Backup Plugin
- Updraft Plus Automatic Backup Plugin