What To Do if Google Says ‘Your Website May Be Compromised’

By Mikal E. Belicove|For Entrepreneur.com|December 21, 2010

If you’re a webmaster, five words you never want to find on the search results for your website on Google are, “This site may be compromised.” The fact that hackers and crackers are making a picnic lunch out of your website pretty much means your immediate future has already been planned for you. Anything else you had scheduled for the day is now on the back burner, thank you very much.

If this warning from Google pops up, you don’t have to feel like the Lone Ranger. Misfits are always targeting Web pages like yours. And because it’s such a frequent event, Google has created a new notification that helps webmasters discover if their site has been altered by an unauthorized third party.

In short, Google has expanded it search results notifications to ensure searchers who visit compromised sites via Google won’t be plagued by spam, malware or other dangerous activity. Google attempts to detect signs of a hacked site as soon as possible through the use of a number of automated tools. It then alerts the webmaster — if that person or your company has a Google Webmaster Tools account — to the problem as soon as possible.

NoteIf you do not have a Google Webmaster Tools account, go get one, NOW!

The good news for webmasters is that as soon as the problem is corrected, Google says it can remove the warning notice automatically. The bad news is, that can take several days (however, webmasters can request a review of their site post-cleanup, and that, according to Google, will speed up the process).If you see the notification “This site may be compromised” on your site’s listings, here’s how you can begin to clean up the wreckage:

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