WordPress malware is a malicious program that enters your WordPress site and infects it. The malware can also be injected into a theme or plugin when it is uploaded to the WordPress repository. If a hacker is able to upload malicious code, it can infect your site the next time you update.
Some malicious code is designed to collect information about your visitors. This can include IP addresses, web browsers, and other details used to build profiles of your visitors.
Malware can also be added to your site through malicious code comments. For example, if you have a form on your site, hackers will often post comments with code to submit that form to their site. This is how a lot of spam is added to WordPress sites.
But how do you know whether your site is infected? Let’s take a look at some of the common signs that your WordPress site is infected with malware.
1. Blank Page
The most common sign of malware is a blank page with code at the top. This could be a malicious script that hacks into the site and renders it unusable. You can check which files are causing the blank page in a few different ways.
If you have technical experience, you can go to the wp-includes folder and check which files are causing the problem. You can also try looking in the cache folder or the plugins folder.
If you don’t have a lot of experience with WordPress, you can also use a free tool like the WordPress malware scan to check your site.
2. Traffic Redirect
Malware can redirect your visitors to another site. This is a common tactic used by hackers to build their own traffic.
This is often done by infected comments added to the site. For example, if you have an online store, attackers will often leave a comment with a link to their store.
You can check for comments that redirect traffic using the free Ahrefs Sitecheck.
3. Random Popups
Malware can also create popups on your site. These are often designed to scare you into following the directions the hacker gives. These directions often involve paying a fine or providing your contact information.
You can check for random popups by using Google Chrome to search your site. You should also check for popups that appear when you load your site.
4. Corrupt .htaccess File
Some malware can hijack the .htaccess file. This is an important file that tells WordPress how to work with your site.
If the .htaccess file is modified, it can prevent your site from loading or enable other security issues.
As with the blank page, you can check your .htaccess file to see which files are causing problems. To do this, you’ll need to access your site’s FTP file.
5. Password Protection
Malware can prevent access to your WordPress site. If a hacker has full control of your site, they can disable access to the admin area.
To check if this has happened, you can try to log into the admin area. If you have trouble, the site is likely infected with malware.
How to Remove Malware From WordPress
Once you know your site has been infected with malware, you need to remove it. To do this, you can use the steps like the ones below.
1. Backup Your Site
The first step is to back up your site. Although this won’t remove the malware, it is a good way to protect your site from immediate damage.
2. Remove Malicious Files
The next step is to remove any malicious files from your site. If you are comfortable doing this, you can remove the files manually.
If you are not comfortable doing this, you can also use a free tool like the Sucuri Sitecheck to check your site.
3. Change Passwords
The next step is to change any passwords you may have used in the past. You should also change any passwords you currently use on the site.
If you haven’t moved your WordPress site, you can also use the free WordPress password reset plugin for this.
4. Update to the Latest Version
The final step is to update your WordPress installation to the latest version. If a new update is available, this can prevent you from getting infected again.
This is one of the most important steps you can take to protect your site.
Once your WordPress site has been infected with malware, it’s important to remove it as soon as possible. The longer you allow your site to be infected, the more damage it can do. This includes collecting private information and infecting other sites. The steps above will remove the malware from your site and protect you from future attacks.
Hosted WP offers WordPress malware removal service that is a great option for those that do not know how to remove malware manually, or for those that want guaranteed and successful malware removal. Let us ensure that your website is safe and malware-free. Get in touch with us today!