If an online antivirus tool detects malware on your website, it will automatically blacklist the site by adding it to its database of malicious websites. Any time a user with the same antivirus tools visits your infected site, they will see a warning.
A hacker may not cause any noticeable damage when penetrating your web server, which means you might not notice any changes in website performance or loss of information. But that doesn't mean everything is fine. A compromised server can be - and is still - commonly used to disperse malware.
What is malware?
Malware is a malicious software application. It gets embedded into your website's pages and can infect any visitors to those websites. Hackers do this by injecting destructive code into a database or into web page templates. Visitors therefore get rerouted to malicious sites or inadvertently download trojans (a type of computer virus that gives hackers access to your system).
Once an antivirus detects malware on your site, it will then blacklist it for all users of the same antivirus. Google also provides popular web browsers - such as Chrome, Safari, Firefox, and Opera - with lists of harmful sites which it identifies when crawling and indexing for its search engine. Web browsers using their blacklists will then block the infected sites.
Being blacklisted in one of these methods destroys a site's reputation. Sites with a bad reputation will see a drop in visitor numbers. Search engines also stop indexing your site so it doesn't show up in search engine results, which can seriously hurt your profits.
You can check a website's credibility by using VirusTotal.com or by navigating to the Reputation tab in Imunify360 or ImunifyAV for Plesk or ISPmanager.
As soon as the website has been disinfected, you must remove it from blacklists as soon as possible.
How to whitelist your website
Unfortunately, there is no way to automate the process. You must manually apply to be removed (delisted) from every blacklist you've been put on. To do this, submit your site to all of the antivirus vendors listed below. Depending on the anti-virus vendor, it can take up to one month for the process to complete.
While you wait to be removed, make sure that your site is completely malware-free.
A website will only be whitelisted when:
- It has been disinfected
- You have submitted a report
- The anti-virus vendor approves the report
- The antivirus vendor removes the domain from their database of harmful domains
- The anti-virus vendor releases an upgraded database to VirusTotal, or the end user updates their anti-viruses databases.
Here are the approved antivirus vendors that accept blacklist removal submissions, either as uploads or as email/form requests.
- Quick Heal
- Eset Nod32 (firstname.lastname@example.org)
You must log in to the following search engines with the webmaster credentials of your site.
- Google Console
- Yandex Safebrowsing
This article originally appeared as part of an awareness post by Imunify360. Imunify360 is a powerful anti-malware scanner that helps keep your website and server free from viruses. Its powerful AI-powered service constantly searches to see if your site has been blacklisted and will help you through the process of getting it whitelisted once more.
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