Today, we got an email that a client forwarded us. She was worried and decided to forward it to us and ask us if it is legit.
The email was basically an email that threatened her to pay up in Bitcoin and if she didn’t, the guy would expose her online as he had planted some malware in her website. We told her that it was definitely a spammer with blackmail intent. Her website was fine.
If you receive such emails that your website has been hacked or has malware, here are 3 steps you can use to verify:
1. Check your website.
Does everything look OK? Is anything amiss? When your website is managed by us, you will notice the lock icon next to your website address so it means extra safety measures in the form of SSL (Secure Socket Layer, in technical speak).
2. Confirm with us.
You can email us or if you know our numbers, WhatsApp for clarification if you are our client. Our role is to help you keep your website safe and accessible at all times. This is the reason for website management, security features and tech support. Tech support and security is strangely invisible – you won’t know it’s working quietly in the background because it works so well. The fact is, we work really hard to keep your website safe.
3. Never click any links in those emails.
Those links will lead you to give up your password or compromise your bank account details. Mark those emails as spam so that Gmail learns how to spot spammers better in the future.
This also reminded me of people who assume that websites are easy to design and manage. I knew someone who used WordPress to create her first website but she had no technical or design knowledge whatsoever. (And some Internet guru taught her to do so!) She just thought it would be easy and she wouldn’t have to spend any money on hiring professionals.
Besides looking really amateurish and sloppy (what does that say about your business if your website looks hideously bad?), her “website” collapsed after a few months because she didn’t know how to manage the technical side of things.
In business, you can choose to spend time or money. If you choose to spend money, you will hire someone who knows what to do and he or she will take care of it for you. The professionals do it faster and better than you could ever do because they’ve had enough experience and know all the shortcuts.
But if you don’t want to spend money, you have to spend your time learning and doing it on your own. If you have the time and inclination, you could do it but you also risk having it all go down the drain too if you’re not tech-savvy or don’t understand what’s needed in developing a website.
For any website, it’s a must to factor in website management and website maintenance work. This work is ongoing because the Internet changes rapidly. Browsers get updated, search engines get better, website software gets updated, and even spammers get smarter. It’s continual work to keep websites functioning!
If you ever come across anything that sounds fishy or threatening, remember, check with us first especially if your website is managed by us. We’re your first line of defence especially when it comes to online matters.
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