Don't Get Hacked! Secure Your WordPress Site

Poll Time

Has your site ever been hacked?

  • Yes, it was a nightmare!
  • Thankfully no!
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Lesson Learned

I love working on my main blog site, since I got the site almost two years ago. At that time, I was a struggling newbie who was working hard to be able to brand myself in online marketing. Brand yourself, brand yourself, brand yourself. I've been hearing that advice everywhere. And so after a few months of promoting here, there, and everywhere and joining contests here and there, I lucked out and got rewarded for some videos that I made for a contest.

One of the first things I did was get my domain name. My friend and mentor Ted helped me set up my blog site. He also helps with some of the technical aspects that I may need from time to time.

I was in a bit of a blogging frenzy during my first year and made quite a number of posts. And I do log into my site daily and check it out. The way I did it is, I made a landing page for my site that I use for promoting at ad exchanges. My advice for you is check your links as often as you can. So one day I checked my landing page and it didn't show. Instead, a blank page was in its place. I checked my cpanel and saw some index.php file was there. This was my main page and not the blog directory so I was wondering what it was doing there. I then deleted it and my landing page reappeared.

I checked my site and found some of my blog posts seemed a little bit out of place -- like re-aligned or something. I was a tickler for details and so I checked my posts one by one. It turned out that there were two "pharma links" embedded in between my posts. Mind you, these cannot be seen unless you check on the html editor as they were inserted as invisible anchor texts. Well, invisible to the untrained eye but otherwise quite visible to search engine bots.

It really freaked me out but I had to clean up ALL MY BLOG POSTS one by one. Arrrggghhh! I was mad that I wanted to strangle whoever did it if I knew who it was. Why can't some people use their talent and efforts on something more productive rather than sabotaging other people's hard work??? The reasoning behind it escapes me. So if you've got a site out there, be vigilant!

Secure Your WordPress Site

Comments 5 comments

Marla Neogra profile image

Marla Neogra 4 years ago from Parkersburg, West Virginia

Thanks, but don't know what Pharma is. Would be helpful to explain that word too.


Rosyel Sawali profile image

Rosyel Sawali 4 years ago from Manila, Philippines Author

Hello Marla,

Well "pharma" refers to pharmacy links that were inserted to blog posts using anchor text. They're hidden from plain view but can be seen by search engine bots. They spam your site with links to pharmacy companies or products. Hope that helps.


Brett.Tesol profile image

Brett.Tesol 4 years ago from Somewhere in Asia

There reasoning is simple, free links to their high profit pharmacy site (probably selling 'performance' related products). However, it is one of the most annoying crimes on the net. The links (that they hoped you wouldn't spot) help their site appear high in search engine results.

Always keep a backup of your website and database, and do this regularly ,... a month's work would be annoying, but a year or two would be a nightmare! Otherwise, WordPress is an awesome website platform.

Shared, up and useful.


His princesz profile image

His princesz 4 years ago

Thanks for this! very useful. I'm sorry though for what happened to you. We really need to be always watchful online. Thanks for sharing and we all learn a lesson. ;) Voted up! :)


Randy 3 years ago

Hi, i have come to find that many people don't really know much about securing their WP-driven blogs. There are in excess of 100,000 blogs created each day of which thousands are hacked because of low security. I would recommend using a service such as http://www.securiilock.com/ (especially if you are a WP noob)

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