The SEO spambot attacks are increasing rapidly. With more than 25% of online traffic is coming from irrelevant bots, their sophisticated methods are damaging common security measurements.
Small websites and enterprises should take the necessary steps to stop the SEO spambot attacks so that they can prevent any damage to their SEO optimization efforts. Not to mention, the SEO spambot attacks can affect the revenue and quality of the traffic of the website.
If you face SEO spambot attacks, you need to undergo some necessary steps to restore and recover your Google search engine rankings. In this article, we will discuss how to stop and fix an SEO spambot site attack.
What is the SEO Spambot Site Attack?
SEO spambots work just like the beneficial Google bots that you want to enter your website. However, unlike the friendly Google bots, the SEO spambots use vulnerabilities to damage your website.
But why do they spambots do that? This is because they are engaged in spamdexing. These attacks from the spambots will use your website to rank some particular content that cannot be ranked otherwise. Bots generate a fortune for the hackers and their spamming ideas will cause your website to suffer from a significant drop in revenue and SEO.
Apart from that, black hat SEO methods are implemented to hide such attacks. Some of the notorious things spambots can do include:
- Content Scrapping
- Link Insertions
- Credential Sniffing
- Redirect Generation
- Content Spam
- Google Analytics Referral Spam
Most of the time, the primary objective of the spambots is to insert links to your business website. Hidden links will enhance the chances of hackers hacking your website and revenue while also damaging the engagement rate. The spambots also develop fake URLs that will redirect your customers to the hacker’s website.
Sometimes, the spambots insert the display ads using an SQL injection. These infiltrations will redirect the customer to a third-party website.
How to Recognize an SEO Spambot Attack?
Spambots will work effectively to damage your normal detection methods. Pages are created or links are inserted with the vest efforts so that they can stay hidden from the website owner.
Sometimes, you will realize that your CMS has some crucial vulnerability, and your website is just another victim of the spambot attack.
However, here are some key points that will help you recognize spambot attack:
- Random site pages
- Decrease in website traffic
- Google search warnings
- GSC warnings
More established websites and enterprises will have much better forms of detection, such as:
- Logging systems
- Monitoring systems
If your website is running on WordPress, the hackers will easily spot core vulnerabilities and use them to their advantage. However, you can use various plugins so that you can diagnose spambot attacks. As per Blue16media, an effective website will help you market your business online.
Step-By-Step Guide to Remedying A Spambot Site Attack
Remedying a spambot site attack might seem a complicated task, but you will be able to complete the process successfully that will help you restore the effectiveness of your website.
Prevent Bots from Making Further Damage
During the next two methods, your business website will stay vulnerable to different types of attacks until you know how the spambots accessed your website and caused damages. Therefore, before you start scanning your website, make sure you implement relevant bot protection.
You can use different types of cloud management systems that use machine learning and AI to prevent bad bots. The tools will also run behavioral analyses that will help your website detect traffic anomalies.
Run a Site Scan to Determine the Impacted Pages
Now that you’ve implemented high-level protection to stop various spambot attacks, now you need to scan your website. The word ‘scan’ is used because you can:
- Run a scanning test using Screaming Frog
- Run different analytics reports to determine the quality of the traffic of every page
You can also check each page of your website manually. Additionally, you will also be able to look at the source code that might come with hidden links.
If you have available logs, don’t forget to analyze them so that you can see the origin of the traffic. The process is undoubtedly time-consuming yet beneficial.
Determine How Your Website Was Infiltrated
Hackers cannot infiltrate secure websites. For the most part, spambot attacks find existing vulnerabilities that cannot be corrected easily. Your website might have been infiltrated due to various reasons including:
- SQL Injections
- Bad Plugins
- Easy Admin Passwords
- Out of Date Software
As the business owner, your primary step is to ensure that the software and the plugins of your website are updated. You also need to update the old scripts. If you notice irrelevant scripts or something you didn’t create in the first place, delete them as soon as possible. This is because spambots often leave the script to regain access to your website.
Make sure you work with someone who can go through your history and logs and generate process methods to prevent such attacks.
Clean the Top Pages
The cleaning process of your website is dependent on what type of spambot attack affected it. If your website has mess page creation or user-generated pages spam, you need to determine which pages are crucial for your business and which aren’t.
After that, you need to delete those spam-generated pages from your website. However, make sure you perform some critical steps for the pages that aren’t spam-generated:
- Mark the pages that are severely impacted
- Analyze the analytics
- Clean the top pages first
Make sure you restore the revenue-generated pages of your website so that they can help you restore the rankings. You also need to search for malicious bugs, redirects, and hidden links.
Monitor the Website
Monitoring your website should be your priority as the marketer. Make sure you monitor your business website in a few different ways:
- Monitor the logs of the site for suspicious activities
- Monitor the analytics and rankings to determine any changes
You should pinpoint the process of the spambot attacks so that you can fix their point of entry. This way you can prevent the spambots from entering your server and damaging everything.
Make sure you always monitor your website so that you can pinpoint any suspicious activity or problem. This way you can solve them quickly.
Spambots are extremely dangerous as they can damage your website without being detected for a long time. If a spambot enters your content, it can quickly damage the reputation of your company. Not to mention, it can also damage the SEO marketing campaign of the company.