Malware is not fun.

The pain is two fold, the embarrassment and un-usability of your website, and then there’s getting it cleaned up in addition to that!

We’ve had rashes of website malware clean up lately. It’s typically malware to either redirect a website elsewhere, or more nefarious, inject different links into existing links on the site. 👎

IT Arsenal recently cleaned up two different instances of malware, both on lower tier hosting, Hostgator, and GoDaddy.

One was fairly easy to clean up, the other was much more difficult and intertwined into the structure of the files. Again

In the end it took hunting through FTP, the database, and employing a malware tool that sifts through the individual files and then taking action on them.

Gladly, both were able to be repaired, however one took 3 days until the primary fix was complete, and during a critical time for prospective buyers for this particular client.

[you’ll notice we are not sharing names this go around on the Client Spotlight, but typically we do]

At the end of the ordeal, one client asked, the very understandable question, how do I keep this from happening. Here was our response.

Prevention

There are a few methods to prevent and protect from website malware.

  • A better host, like WPEngine, who takes better care of their shared hosting environments would be a big help.
  • Running and checking weekly/monthly, a type of security plugin, like https://www.malcare.com which alerts you and attempts some form of automated removal.
  • Keeping regular, routine, monthly backups, and managing those offsite.

IT Arsenal does this as part of a package that includes project work. Here’s what I said to the client recently.

“I think you already know this but I have a $100 monthly program that includes backups, and easy restores, and I would do this security work as part of it, Something like this if it were to happen, would be a quick restore for functionality and then investigation at no cost.”

You can find out more about the Fix and Maintain service here.

Good luck out there, and let IT Arsenal know if you need help!

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