SEO poisoning involves Internet criminals exploiting weaknesses on countless websites to insert invisible links. These cause the manipulated websites to appear near the top of search engine results lists. As a result, users are drawn to the manipulated sites, where they are exposed to all kinds of risks and damage.
Internet criminals install so-called backdoors on websites with a view to taking full control of a server. If they succeed, they can use the server for further criminal activities.
Visibly defacing a website is more about activists showing off than criminals making money. Websites are sometimes defaced to humiliate their owner.
Identifying website manipulation
How to spot threats:
Cleaning up manipulated websites
If your website has been infected, seek professional assistance immediately from your hosting provider or your webmaster. The harmful code must always be removed in full. If this is not possible, the only option is to install an uninfected backup. Take a look at our five tips to see how you can identify and remove further vulnerabilities.
For more information on making the Internet safer read the SWITCH Security Blog.