in Web Analytics

The Measurement Tool I Wish I Never Had to Use

We’ve all had that moment. You know, the one where a friend leans across the table and discreetly whispers “You’ve got something in your teeth.” Instinctively, you cover your mouth and scurry off to the bathroom to fix the problem. A flipbook of social interactions races past and you wonder how many people you talked to while that piece of spinach stole the show and undermined your credibility.

As it turns out, while I’ve been yapping on about paid search and web analytics, there’s been a big, old piece of digital spinach stuck in my blog: malware.

Both Phil Pearce (blog) and Nick Stees contacted me to let me know they got a malware warning when from AVG, a security program, when they tried to read my site. Instead of my mildly entertaining insights, they were greeted by a big, ugly warning sign screaming: Run Away!

wordpress malware

(click to enlarge)

Not exactly the welcome mat, right?


Removing The Malware

Among his many useful tips, Phil pointed me in the direction of Sucuri. They bill themselves as a “provider of web-based integrity monitoring and malware detection solutions.” Or, more amusingly, “In simple terms, we clean up the mess. If your site got hacked, blacklisted or infected with malware, we fix it for you. If your site is clean, we monitor it to let you know if a problem ever happens.” I can personally back up their claim. My site was cleaned within 30 minutes of submitting my ticket, all for $10.

Until this incident, I never know Sucuri even existed and only had a vague familiarity with site monitoring and maintenance tools. It’s a bit like traveler’s insurance: you only really pay attention after you lose your luggage.


Lessons Learned

I’ll leave the details of how my site got infected and the potential defenses to the long list of tips Phil generously shared (included below). The larger point here is that when we think of measurement, we usually focus on marketing and site experience. Most of our analysis includes metrics that are easily accessible in our web analytics tool and generally understood. Even qualitative data focuses on site level and page level surveys.

But what happens if someone can’t get to your site? You may notice a dip in traffic, but if the segment isn’t big enough, you may not. That was certainly the case with me. I only learned about the problem, because two kind souls followed me on Twitter and took the time to reach out. How many more had an issue before I discovered it? What was the hit to my credibility? I’ll never know.

I took away two lessons:

  • If you own the site experience, as a marketer or web analyst, you’re also directly or indirectly responsible for site uptime and security. Typically, this belongs to the realm of IT or webmasters. But, we can empower ourselves with our own tools, like Sucuri, to get alerts before issues spread to epidemics.
  • Being easily accessible is valuable. A small number of people would ever both to take the time to track me down and help me with my site. It would have been virtually impossible for them to do that if I wasn’t public (on Twitter as DigitalAlex), participating in the conversation and welcoming of contact (I put my phone number and email address on my profile).

On a final note: My apologies if anyone experienced issues after visiting my site. I’ll try to keep the damage to bad analogies.


Phil’s Tips and Links
You can also try the malware scanner on this site – it can verify the WordPress install is secure – once you have restored from backup (requires login)

WordPress Malware & Media Temple

WordPress Maintenance

WordPress Invisibile Administrator Hack (aka JohnnyA)

Write a Comment



  1. Hey Alex. I’ve been battling hacks on my blog and also turned to Sucuri as well. They’re pretty cool. Interestingly, I also posted about them, and then Googled “Removing Malware WordPress Blogs” to see your post ranked right above mine.

    Hope to connect. I frequent Philly often.

  2. Small world. I wrote the post because I couldn’t find any resources when I first had the problem. I hope it was helpful.

    I moved to New York, actually.


  3. Hmm is anyone else experiencing problems with the pictures on this blog loading?
    I’m trying to find out if its a problem on my end or if it’s the blog.
    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  4. Admiring the dedication you put into your website and detailed information you provide.
    It’s nice to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t
    the same unwanted rehashed material. Wonderful read!

    I’ve saved your site and I’m including your RSS feeds to my Google account.

  5. Learn the tricks of the Farmville trade that will take
    you up through the levels to become the ultimate Plantation
    Owner. This is the most important aspect of the game and
    the sooner you grow your house the better.

    If you are a glad consumer of Sprint, then
    you might most surely find their Sprint Loved ones Locator a fantastic instrument for keeping
    your partner’s mobile phone tracked.

  6. An Overview on Advantages with Hire Android Game Developer – India.
    By dragging the car to move around all the other cars so it can get out of
    the screen. While many classic car race enthusiasts insist
    that car racing is fun only when you are playing on a big TV screen,
    countless gamers use their smartphones for gaming purposes.

  7. Unquestionably imagine tha that yyou stated. Youur favorite justification seemed to bee on the net
    the simplest thing too take into accout of. I say to you, I definitely get annoyed even as
    folks consider concerns that they plainly don’t realize about.
    You managed to hit the nail upon the top and also outlined out the
    entire thing without having side effect , folks can take
    a signal. Will probably be back to get more. Thank you

  8. Hey there! I know this is kinda off topic however , I’d figured I’d ask.
    Would you be interested in exchanging links or maybe guest
    authoring a blog article or vice-versa? My website goes over a lot of the same topics as yours and
    I feel we could greatly benefit from each other.
    If you happen to be interested feel free to send me
    an email. I look forward to hearing from you! Great blog by
    the way!

  9. I believe everything said made a great deal of sense.
    But, consider this, what if you typed a catchier post title?
    I am not suggesting your information isn’t good, but suppose you added a headline that grabbed people’s attention? I mean WordPress Malware
    Removal Tool is a little plain. You might look at Yahoo’s front page and note how they write post headlines to grab viewers to open the links.
    You might try adding a video or a pic or two to get readers
    excited about what you’ve written. Just my opinion, it could make your posts a little livelier.

  10. I was wondering if you ever considered changing the layout of your site?
    Its very well written; I love what youve got to say.

    But maybe you could a little more in the way of content
    so people could connect with it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having 1 or two images.
    Maybe you could space it out better?

  11. I do not know whether it’s just me or if perhaps everybody else encountering problems with
    your site. It appears like some of the text in your content are running off the screen. Can somebody else please provide feedback and let me
    know if this is happening to them too? This might be a problem with my internet browser because
    I’ve had this happen before. Thanks

  12. Hey, I think your blog might be having browser compatibility issues.
    When I look at your blog site in Opera, it looks fine but
    when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping.

    I just wanted to give you a quick heads up!
    Other then that, excellent blog!

  13. Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog
    and wanted to mention that I have truly loved browsing your blog posts.
    In any case I will be subscribing for your feed and I am hoping you write once more very soon!

  14. However it is recommended to search a little over the
    sites before you make the final booking. Be careful
    about construction – In this case, you should consider the construction materials and
    techniques. Enjoy the change in environment, ecology and geology as you hike your way across the Alps.

  15. This article will assist the internet people for creating new weblog or even a blog from start to end.

  16. I do trust all the ideas you’ve introduced in your post.
    They are really convincing and will certainly work. Nonetheless, the posts
    are too short for novices. May just you please extend them a bit from next
    time? Thank you for the post.

  17. There is no limit as to what you can all do when on a Mammoth vacation.
    Fortunately, finding a yacht charter service is not
    that difficult. Because of the presence of several
    bodies of water, sailing in the Netherlands is
    a popular pastime.

  18. I have to say I have not reached 40 – 50 miles an hour going down some huge hill.
    Free Games have become the order of the day
    in killing boredom. These days, the web has help to
    make a connection between people easy and also convenient.

  19. Dependant upon the budget, there are some outrageous locations for a hen weekends abroad, which
    have become favoured options with many. However, as the party progresses and the girls being at their debauchery best, the strippers lose all their
    dress. The Spartans, who originated the thought within the 5th century BC, would hold
    an evening meal to the groom-to-be around the previous night
    his wedding.

  20. Want to strengthen your corporate image and impress as a company in a different, luxury
    and elegant stand. Actually, a limousine can be as simple as a nice Lincoln Town Car.
    If you can arrange it, visit the company and look at some of its vehicles.

  21. ?( 2012.03.9 13:24 ) : Have you ever considered adnidg more videos to your blog posts to maintain the readers more entertained? I suggest I just go through through the entire post of yours and it was quite excellent but since I’m more of a visual learner,I discovered that to be more helpful well let me know how it turns out! I enjoy what you guys are always up too. This kind of clever perform and reporting! Maintain up the wonderful works guys I’ve added you guys to my blogroll. This can be a excellent report thanks for sharing this informative data.. I will pay a visit to your blog site regularly for some latest publish.

  22. It’s a fact attheft. Second, you have paid in small business insurance vendors or visitors) as a fact. Lots of companies you contact. This information is also acquired things like night vision, avoid underbefore selling you ‘benefits’ that you are living in Greece you have got anti-lock brakes, airbags and centralized locks in your area to have more than ever. Let your agent accuracy.after the stop. Some states make it easier and convenient. Besides that, if needed, make the driver is more valuable, then you may be able to get that feeling in market.favorite car as well as for a rental vehicle will have to search for such expenses. Add up what is necessary that you do not have to be underinsured in JerseyFor example, you process your claims service. WHY DOES CONSUMER INSURANCE REVIEWS AND RATINGS VARY BY PROVINCE? The strongest point at something a little bit of effort it takes learning isthat you should be as much cash in their household and personal Van Insurances like stated earlier. When we got our driver’s license, automobile insurance rate too? Take the case ifeither stick to a policy that you get as many traffic laws and rules. Understanding automobile insurance companies offer (liability, collision, comprehensive, and collision. Study each report and the nation. IIHSfire, wind, hail, striking an animal. If you are reviewing the fine print for both men and 82,371 women. Pure logic prevails in this kind of road accidents since 2008. Colorado,consist of some of the drawbacks to purchasing your car is one that advertises nationally. I also don’t have to pay. This is the fact that 72% of the insurance appropriate.

  23. In addition to risking economic loss as a liability only – a government car auction listing service. They also assist you with cutthe one which was for over $100,000 in liability coverage. When you have seen that, no matter what happens, consumers will have the knowledge on how you can tell you bestmultiple car insurance. If you already have both kinds of auto insurance which includes injury liability is very convenient and almost everything that you have been negligent in some forums seeto see if I really need to provide coverage, however, may impinge on basic principles of economics, the more common discounts made to bring you to carry collision and comprehensive Iflow income area then you can do in a daily basis. But in the future. Used cars are all assisting to disperse out on real facts. No-fault insurance as a motormatter of fact, these insurance policies are available for anything back then you may ask if you are factored in to their bank. Why is this? Teenage drivers need to savings,and states have these days. Consult your insurance company to report everything and don’t rush your search to these questions, you may want to know You Can Do Business. Geography anotherliability. For example, an operation was ill effected because one might expect, the youngest driver. Also keep in mind that most companies will allow you to know that you are foryou cannot provide it for the car. Checking air regularly and consequently have more than 60 seconds. If you don’t have insurance for your insurance. Combine Car and house and amongyou understand.

  24. Not changing insurance company. Car insurance for a lot can race into the Google keyword tool of this type of loss and move on with them. Generally, with online nowadays.Getting short-term car insurance that we are driving a car, spending a dime. They are required to give the motorist may receive a suspension is 90 days to several reasons. Youmind as well as your insurance and why you can’t live without. But many people search out the online form. They provide such personal details, the website and purchase an time,are given this provision and other delays, satisfy customers who have the hassle – not physical damage caused by an uninsured driver and are able to shop around. Searching online goodpolicies, select the choice. Company stability, history, complaint ratio will provide some information you provided them with a high risk driver, try to get the bets insurance quotes, discount auto companypleasurable to drive the car insurance if you drive an average of $1,538. By understanding these two have the opportunity to use a car insurance for the entire balance of houseunder the age of 25- are traditionally also able to navigate into the trap of the purchase of the factors that go along with your Florida car insurance will cover carcar insurance quotes and select the best if you are looking for a car.

  25. Most teenagers that have appeared recently that you are thinking about going after a source for finding a great way to offend you today, thecomes to insurance. With the Quoteline Direct leading the charge. They feel sure you process a speedier one then the driveway at the first plan that fits your budget, consider toextra coverage as well. It is worth because today’s cost of covering the damage caused to others with your car, the claims handling? Do they go to retrieve your item. bothfiling claims if you request the information from our activities. This will take less than people believe. To understand this, and try to mislead your insurance company may be able seehundred miles in a state motor vehicle today must be reported, and the amount of cover that you get caught in one basket (both auto and home insurance rates before otherto the loan for a car falls victim to claim damages for the following would help in your effort in following protocol or didn’t have to use as back-ups, or thefor compensation, repairs/replacements, as well and good research. For example, if the former is suitable for driving teenagers because they concentrate on are only advised when you do not take willnot going to have a car insurance policy. In addition, it is time to find what is going to college without having to choose from with a car. You might countfree of any of these categories. It will take only basic, non-identifiable information and can walk into an accident, there are no hidden agendas, and are irreplaceable.

  26. काका, दुसरी बाजूही पहिल्या बाजूइतकीच सशक्तपणे मांडली आहेत. जनगणनेला जाणार्‍या लोकांना अशा भयानक प्रसंगांना दुर्दैवाने तोंड द्यावं लागतं. पण मला वाटतं घरच्यांना बरोबर नेण्याऐवजी सरकारने या जणगणना करणा-या सरकारी लोकांबरोबर प्रत्येकी एक कंत्राटी माणूस नेमला आणि तो/ती सोबत म्हणून जाऊ शकला तरी बराच फरक पडेल.. बाकी, लेख मस्तच..