As briefly mentioned in my previous post, my blog URL had been hijacked on Saturday and I am still dealing with the repercussions. However, since you’re able to read this, at a bare minimum my URL is functioning again.
I am only semi-happy with the support I received from my hosting company, because they basically told me I had to delete my WP installation and not re-use any of my database (← which is where my blog content and comments reside), and then they weren’t really responsive when I inquired about a more “reasonable” option.
I then took to the Internet (as one does!) to find a work-around, because the original suggestions (in proper tech-lingo, as you can imagine) were not a viable option. It would have basically meant to start my blog from scratch and lose all my content (from 14 years, mind you). Yeah, that wasn’t going to happen.
I found that my hijacked URL was most likely caused by a vulnerability in the popular WP GDPR Compliance Plugin (that probably many of us installed to comply with the recently implemented General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) laws in the EU. Go figure!)
It was a relatively “easy” fix and I probably didn’t have to wipe out my WP installation completely (which at this point I had already done, while also manually searching my database for any “suspicious” files), but at least, I am tech-savvy enough to take matters into my own hands. A follow-up scan by my hosting company didn’t find any other “malware” in my account.
Of course, this couldn’t have happened at a worse time with NaBloPoMo going on and all. But rest assured, I’ll be catching up on my daily posting (it was truly out of my hands!). If you see anything wonky on my site, please let me know. I am still in the process of installing and updating plugins one-by-one and some info on my sidebar got wiped out that I have to bring back.
The silver lining: WordPress has finally started sending me emails again when I receive new comments. This feature hadn’t been working for me for a while and even though I could have done without a complete new re-installation, I guess sometimes a fresh start has its benefits! Comment away!