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How to Detect Malware on your Website (And How to Protect your Site)by@syedbalkhi
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How to Detect Malware on your Website (And How to Protect your Site)

by Syed BalkhiAugust 25th, 2022
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Google blacklists around 20,000 websites for malware and 50,000 for phishing every week. If your site gets infected and you fail to get rid of the malware within a certain period, you become the bad boy in the eyes of Google. Tracing malware and removing it isn't as easy as it sounds, especially for those without much technical knowledge. You can easily spot them and remove them if you know how exactly to detect them. In the following section, we'll tell you how to detect malware on your website and how to prevent it from being infected.

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Installing malware in computers to hamper business or steal data is one of the oldest techniques that hackers have been using since the 80s.


And with the increase in cybercrime and data breaches, this has become a very common problem in the internet world.


The bigger problem, however, is that if your site gets infected and you fail to get rid of the malware within a certain period, you become the bad boy in the eyes of Google.


According to sources, Google blacklists around 20,000 websites for malware, and around 50,000 for phishing, every single week.


Out of all the website traffic in the world, 92.47% of the traffic goes through Google. So imagine the impact you'll have on your business if Google was to blacklist your site.


We are sure you don't want your website to be on the blacklist. For that, however, you need to be constantly monitoring your website for any malware and get rid of it the moment you identify it.


However, tracing malware and removing it isn't as easy as it sounds, especially for those without much technical knowledge.


But we have good news for you. You can easily spot them and remove them if you know how exactly to detect them.


In the following section, we'll tell you how to detect malware on your website and how to prevent your site from being infected. So let's get started.

Common Signs of Malware on your Website

Detecting malware on your website is crucial, but it isn't an easy task. Many marketers don't even realize that their website is infected unless they notice changes in the site's appearance.


When you see that your website appearance has changed without your consent, it's definitely a sign of infection.


But you don't always need to wait that long to identify the infection if you know a few easy tricks to check whether your website is affected by malware or not.


Let's see what they are.

1. Massive Decline in Website Traffic

A decline in website traffic isn't an uncommon thing. But if it drops drastically and massively, then you should know that it can be a cause of worry. So make sure to track your traffic regularly.


You can easily do that on Google Analytics. It gives you a detailed summary of your traffic, where it's coming from, the location of the user, the device they are using, etc.

2. Modified Website Files

Sometimes, you might notice that some of your website files have been modified without your knowledge. If this happens, then your website is definitely in trouble. But how do you know if that has happened?


One way to know that is to use terminal commands on your server. Type the following command on your terminal -


$ find /etc -type f -print ‘%TY - %™-%Td %TT %


If you want to see directory files, type this in your terminal -


$ find /etc -printf '%TY-%Tm-%Td %TT % ' | sort -r


This will help you identify all unfamiliar modifications in the last 7 - 30 days. If you see any unwanted changes, then get ready to take the necessary actions to clean up your website.


To ensure that you don't lose your website data, you need to mandatorily backup your data regularly. That way, you can restore it whenever you want to.

3. Your Website Randomly Crashes or Freezes

Another way of identifying website malware is to check if your website randomly freezes or crashes. If it happens too often, then it might be a sign of the presence of malware.


However, it's not necessary that every time your website freezes, it's a sign of infection.


It can be due to slow web hosting speed, bad internet connection, too many plugins on your site, or unoptimized images too. You need to analyze which one of them is causing your site to slow down.

4. You Don't Have Access to Your Website

As the owner of your website, you would want to login to your website. But if your website is infected with malware, then you may not be able to login even when you're using the correct credentials. So if you can't login to your site, then you need to run a website check.


But sometimes, you may not have any problem even after the site is infected. So the best way to check your website for malware is to use a website scanner.


These tools not only make things fast but accurate too. You just need to submit your website address, and it will automatically trace all malware on the site.


Now, if your website is facing any of these issues, you should be able to fix them. Here are a few quick fixes you can try.

How to Remove Your Website Malware

Removing your website malware is extremely important for the security of your business and for the safety of your users. Some people opt to remove malware from their websites manually. But doing so can be a tedious job.


So the best way to do it is to use a tool that can automatically scan and remove any unwanted elements from the website. Just do a Google search to look for such tools. You'll find hundreds of them online.


How to Keep Your Website Safe from Malware


Keeping your website safe from malware can be challenging, especially with the rising number of cybercrime cases. But it's not impossible. If you maintain your website well, you can easily keep all malware away from it.


Here are a few quick ways you can try out.

1. Backup your website regularly

Hackers have become a lot smarter today as compared to a few years ago. So in spite of taking all the measures, you might have to compromise your site's security.


The best way to keep your website safe at such times is to backup your website regularly. This will ensure that you have your data safe with you even if your site gets attacked. Just make sure to store it offsite so that it's not accessible to the hackers.

2. Regular Updates

Another important point to think about when considering your website security is to regularly update your site. Most WordPress websites that had to compromise their security used outdated software. We don't want you to repeat the same mistakes.

3. Use Strong Passwords

Try using stronger passwords for your website and instruct your users to do the same. This should make it difficult for your hackers to attack your website or do any damage that can hamper your business.

4. Use SSL and HTTPS

If you don't want Google to display security warnings to your users, then make sure that you use HTTPS on your website. Not doing that can make your site vulnerable to hackers, and it can be easily infected by malware.

Over to You

Getting your website hacked or infected can be scary. But you can easily prevent malicious users from corrupting your website. The above tips are some of the ways to do that.

So do try them out and let us know if it worked for you. We hope you find the post helpful in keeping your site safe.