When it comes to computer hacking and Internet data breaches the news media and filmmakers tend to sensationalize and over-produce what really happens. To the average person, they create the perception that a hacked website will cause the user’s computer to blip and bleep, video monitors are going to start scrolling with gobbledygook and a message of defeat will be posted in New York’s Time Square.  More often than not a security breach is not going to be immediately obvious in this way.

So how exactly can you tell if you own an infected website? It’s a bit technical – something that can require a formal computer forensics investigation – and there are tons of variables involved. That said there are still some signs you can look for to determine if something has gone awry on your website:

  • Your website content has been changed (even slightly) or perhaps rearranged
  • Your website loads very slowly
  • Your password to login and upload content no longer works
  • You start receiving odd emails from random addresses, warnings that you’re being blacklisted or legitimate emails that flood your inbox

You’ll likely discover such clues over time – perhaps a day or two. However, in many cases, several weeks or months can go by before you’ll ever know that you’ve been hacked. The important thing is to know what to look for and stay alert.

In reality a website breach is anything but “cool” or “glamorous”. In fact, arguably the only good thing that can come of it will be a reminder that you’re indeed human when you get that sinking feeling in your stomach after you’ve discovered the breach. Keep in mind that getting hacked is not dependent on having anything of value on your website. The bad guys will hack your site just because they can. Often they’ll simply make their mark and move on, yet they still might use your website or server for attacking other victims and propagating website malware.

Do something about your website security now. Being proactive will pay off, and the good news is there are solutions available to help you secure your website in a simple and immediate way. Acunetix will help you find any vulnerabilities that can be use to hack into your website. Register your 14-day trial of Acunetix today and see how easy it is to uncover your vulnerabilities. For all the vulnerabilities detected, you will get easy to follow instructions which will help you address the vulnerabilities before they can be used against you.


Acunetix developers and tech agents regularly contribute to the blog. All the Acunetix developers come with years of experience in the web security sphere.