- 1 How to Fix “The site below contains harmful programs” Chrome
- 2 How to Fix “The site ahead contains harmful programs” Red Screen in WordPress
- 3 How to Fix the “Deceptive Site Ahead” Error: 4 Steps to Remove It
- 3.1 1. Detect the Cause of the Problem
- 3.2 2. Back Up Your Site
- 3.3 3. Remove Dangerous Website Files
- 3.4 4. Request Google to Review Your Site
- 3.5 Invest in Security Plugins and Software
- 3.6 Use an SSL Certificate
- 3.7 Do Regular Updates
- 3.8 Practice Safe Browsing
- 3.9 Protect Your Site Login
- 3.10 Manage User Activity
- 3.11 Elija un proveedor de alojamiento seguro
- 3.12 Was this tutorial helpful?
- 4 Video The site ahead contains harmful programs
How to Fix “The site below contains harmful programs” Chrome
WordPress Security Expert November 12, 2021 January 9, 2022 WordPress Errors / WordPress Malware / WordPress Security
Updated on January 9, 2022
The alert “El sitio anterior contains harmful programs” is activated because it opens a website infected and hijacked by malware in Chrome or Firefox. Means the wordpress site has also been hacked and infected with malware and its security is compromised. In this publication, the mostraremos how to solve the advertencia that the site that will find itself will contain harmful programs in WordPress and the steps to prevent that you can protect your site from wordpress.
Google Chrome present ce type d’erreurs every time we open a website with harmful content or malicious code. If you still see such errors on your WordPress site, you conclude that someone is hacking it or malware attacks have damaged it.
Such consequences and signs indicate that search engines, namely Google, have blacklisted your site. Pour autant, it is necessary to take precautionary measures to protect users who suffer from data theft and fraud.
A hacked website can make you feel a bit worried and anxious about the consequences, as it creates a domino effect. If visitors can’t get to your website, your traffic will start to drop. You will see your rankings drop which further affects your income.
Pour autant, the unique solution pour récupérer sur le website est de prendre des mesures immédiates. Of course, it requires a bit of light, and we made sure to do it today.
If you’ve ever encountered the “The site ahead contains harmful programs” warning screen while browsing a site, be sure to check out the explanation below:
Also Read : Remove “This Site May Be Hacked” Warning Message on Google
⭐ What is “The site below contains harmful programs” error?
When we open a hacked WordPress site, which contains and carries harmful programs, it will post a message announcing “The site ahead contains harmful programs” in red pants. Not only is this unsafe for visitors, but it also lowers your overall revenue. Such errors are also triggered when your website accidentally falls under an attack of malicious software in the background. This general announcement message is intended to alert visitors to the website that is affected by malicious software. It could also cause the loss of financial information in your browser cookies through various means.
A red screen with the error message ” The site you are accessing contains malware ” or “Deceptive site ahead” can be a stressful situation for many website owners.
The site has been infected with a virus or malicious code, usually related to adult themes, online games, sports activities, fake news, banners, coupons, commercial offers, among others. Even the malicious entered code affects the computers of people who visit the website.
Such cyber attack issues can even harm various CMS platforms like Drupal, Shopify, Prestashop, Magento when the websites are outdated.
This can happen if:
- A website hosts phishing pages
- Un site Web est infecté par un logiciel malveillant/virus
- Un site Web contient du code sur votre site Web renvoyant à des sites Web douteux selon Google
- Website is transmitting your Personal information to unsecure servers/links
- SSL certificate is compromised
- The site contains credit card stealing malware
⭐ The site ahead contains harmful programs – Causes
As discussed above, if there is malware on the website, Google will flag your platform as fraudulent and potentially dangerous.
In this section, we discuss in detail various possible reasons for occurring such a warning message of “The site ahead contains harmful programs”.
Always remember that search engines like Google value the safety of their users and think about their satisfaction. So, if any issue occurs with your website, a warning message will display and stop them from reaching the “unsafe website”
Once the website gets under attack by malware, a hacker can take advantage of it to perform several malicious activities. These activities include the theft of confidential data, posting malicious content, and the sale of illegal products. Such activities will harm and affect your users in the following ways.
- They may be subject to viewing inappropriate content and ads.
- They could be redirected to malicious websites that trick them into downloading malware onto their computers.
- Hackers can also redirect them to phishing and malware sites with the intention of stealing their personal data.
Let’s dive into more details below. Malware Infection One of the primary reasons for the ‘The site ahead contains harmful programs’ error is malware infection. Often, websites get infected with malware for months until it’s discovered. Malware is often inserted into a website with these frequent cyberattacks. Here is our detailed expert guide on how to remove malware from WordPress site. SQL injection attack: WordPress SQL injection vulnerability is the second most critical security subject in WordPress.
These attacks can expose delicate and sensitive information about the database, which allows hackers to make changes to your content and the entire website.
The SQL injection also accomplishes many attacks. WordPress SQL injection can destroy the entire database of your site. .htaccess Hacked Attackers can hack your htaccess file, which redirects the users from search engines to malware, Attaching malware to the website, Browser Fingerprinting and IP logging without user interaction, Watering Hole Attacks & Information Disclosure Using htaccess. Malicious Advertisements Using various WordPress hacks, these could be injected into your site. Hackers will not only take advantage of WordPress vulnerabilities to carry out malware injections but also harm the website in different means. Various types of hacks include WordPress pharma hacking, Japanese keyword hack & malware redirect hack in WordPress. Outdated SSL Certificate An outdated SSL certificate could also be the reason for “The site ahead contains harmful programs” that is most often noticed by Google. That’s why it is necessary to move from HTTP to HTTPS. However, installing SSL certificates is not only enough. Redirecting your website from HTTP to HTTPS is also significant. Despite this, having some of your web pages as HTTP and some as HTTPS gives Google a mixed content signal.
Other common causes are discussed below. Vulnerable themes/plugins Over time the lapse of years, themes, and plugins usually build wordpress vulnerabilities. Developers launch security patches to cure the vulnerabilities when they are discovered. One can get access to the updated version in the form of these patches.
Ultimately your vulnerabilities will be cured when the new version is updated. In a few cases, the developers dawdle to detect the vulnerability, which gives an advantage to the hackers to hack the vulnerable websites.
Also, the latest version is not updated by the owner. This enables hackers to find the vulnerability in your plugins and exploit it for malicious activities.
Recently many vulnerabilities have been found in popular wp plugins, read about them here, here & here.
Surely one of the first questions that come to mind is… Why does the browser say that my website is dangerous? The answer is simple: security reasons.
The most likely in these cases is that your WordPress has been hacked, and a malicious user has taken advantage of a vulnerability in a plugin to inject malicious code into your application. Nulled or pirated themes and plugins Many developers allow users to access the premium features by nulled software. The usage of this software is very enticing as well.
Nevertheless, the preloaded malware is already inbuilt into this software. Even hackers can effortlessly distribute the malware to all installed sites. That’s why it’s necessary to keep your WordPress theme security up to date.
To download any sort of software and unessential programs is inadvisable from our side. Read – How to Scan & Detect Malware in Nulled WordPress Themes. Visiting a malicious or phishing site To open a malicious website can be negotiated and deluded at times. These sites are coded in such a way that by simply visiting the site, it could infect your computer and your own website if you have your WordPress dashboard open on another tab. Its Negetive Impact On Your Site The hazardous consequences can be experienced when the security of “the site ahead contains harmful programs chrome ” is flagged on your site.
- Decrease in traffic – The traffic will drastically drop when your spectators see the warning, and they will opt for the ‘go back to safety’.
- Fall in SEO ranking – Google penalizes your site for having malware which will cause your SEO rankings to drop. Your site can be ranked among the top three one day, and you would see it drop to the second or third page the next. Your site may not even appear on Google’s search results pages. This could be a result of Spam Link Injection or large scale SEO Spam
- Google ads suspended due to malware on site
- Web host suspension –The account will be instantly suspended when the malware is detected on your site. Until and unless the malware is not cleaned the website platform cannot be hosted. Read our detailed post GoDaddy Site Suspended – Siteground Account Suspended Site
So you see that your hacked WordPress site also puts your visitors at risk of being hacked. In order to protect their users, they blacklist your site and display the warning message “This site contains malware”.
Now that you know why this happened, we will show you how to remove the site ahead contains harmful programs chrome error below. We will approach this in three steps:
- Scan and clean your WordPress website for malware
- Submit your site to Google for review
- Prevent future malware infections on your WordPress site
To safeguard the servers and interests the following steps are taken.
The site ahead contains harmful programs Warning in Chrome
Google pays a lot of attention to the user’s online safety, and that’s also the inclusive concept of the Chrome browser. They can invade your privacy occasionally, but phishing and malware sites are immediately identified.
So even without the online protection of third-party antivirus, you are likely to run into one or more security warnings along the way.
Especially, if you scroll through the dark parts of the Internet or click on pop-ups or advertisements.
They are characterized by the red alert screen that informs you that the link you are trying to follow is:
- Malware infection on the website.
- Links to hacked sites
- Outdated WordPress version
- Plugins or themes having malicious code
- spam in your comments linking to questionable sources can cause a warning.
As for the “Pre-misleading site” warning, most of the time these are treacherous sites trying to steal your personal data, especially passwords. The milder versions come with dozens of ad pop-ups.
When something like this happens, you can submit a report, close the tab and avoid the site in the future, or just open it if you know you can trust it. These protection measures are there to prevent phishing and malware infections. Also, Chrome will automatically prevent all downloads from unauthorized sources.
Steps To Diagnose
You can Verify the Status of Your Website in Google’s safe browsing analysis tool. All you need to do is add your site’s domain name as the query parameter to the URL like this:
https://www.google.com/safebrowsing/diagnostic?site=YourDomain.com Checking Your Site in the Google Search Console Go to > “Security issues” link in the Google Search Console. Here you can check with Google to see what the problem is .
Yo can file a report for an incorrect phishing warning in case there is no issue shown there. Goto Google’s “Report Incorrect Phishing Warning” page. Complete the form and click the “Submit Report” button.
Remove Disable Unsafe Site Warnings in Browser
In Google Chrome We found some bogus reports that it is a browser hijacker or a malware infection at hand. It is not. It is an integral part of Chrome that can be disabled if you wish.
Here’s how to turn off the site ahead contains harmful programs chrome indicator :
- Open Chrome.
- Click on the 3-dot menu on the far right and open Settings
- Scroll down and expand the Advanced section.
- Navigate to Privacy and security.
- Disable Protect you and your device from dangerous sites
We recommend using an AdBlocker to overcome pop-ups and antivirus for online protection. Windows Defender will suffice most of the time, and it makes your browsing more secure. In Firefox Verify the Status of Your Website in Safe Browsing Essentially, this alert is to inform the user that the site they are going to visit is suspicious and may contain malware.
According to Google, warnings protect you from harm caused by dangerous sites, such as malware infections and phishing attacks. But it hasn’t always been clear why a specific website triggers a warning.
So the next time a user comes across such a warning from browsing Google results pages, verify that your site does indeed have a problem, you can manually test your site against the Google Safe Browsing tool.
Go to the Safe Browsing site status page and enter your site’s URL:
If a site displays the security level as “Dangerous” in red, then this could indicate that the content is bad or has a temporary malware infection.
The condition of the site will return to normal once the webmaster has cleaned up the site. To help speed up this process, Google automatically provides the webmaster with a notification to check the health of their site through Google Search Console.
Make a complete backup of your WordPress site. Removing malware from your wordpress site can become a daunting task. Even after cleaning your site thoroughly, the malicious code can keep coming back until you find and remove the backdoor placed on your site.
Find the backdoor. It could be a compromised password, unsafe file permissions, or a cleverly disguised file. We have a detailed guide on how to find a backdoor in a hacked WordPress site and fix it.
How to Fix The Site Ahead Contains Harmful Programs Warning
This warning is caused by the malware present in the website. To remove The site ahead contains harmful programs warning, you need to get rid of malicious code at first place. Then you need to resubmit site to google for reconsideration.
Follow the below mentioned 10 easy steps. Step 1: Find the Cause Finding and removing viruses manually can be time-consuming, tedious, and frustrating. That’s why it is necessary to make use of specialized tools. There are numerous free plugins that provide the best WordPress security services. These plugins will not only prevent sites from being attacked but also keep hackers away from infecting your website. Hence, it will protect your site from various threats.
However, you need to install the software before suffering from the attack.Hunt for malware in the following files:
- index.php file
- core theme files
- header & footer files
- wp-content uploads
- functions.php file (if using WordPress)
- WP-Content Uploads Hack
- wp-config file (if this file is infected, wp-config hack could be at work)
You can also get a list of infected URLs causing the issue in Google search console under “security settings”
Step 2: Scan your Website for Malware Finding the source of the issue couldn’t be easier with the help of wordpress security scanners. Here’s a couple of them. Using WP Hacked Help Its is a free malware scanner dedicated to seeking out infected files on your website.
- Go to this page.
- Insert your website URL and hit the Scan Website button.
Yes, you can review your website manually. So, it is recommended to complete a scan using an online tool that runs automatically. This way, you can save a lot of time and effort.
WP Hacked Help has various professional security solutions for WordPress websites. We have the ability to fix the WordPress site immediately. Try our WordPress malware scanner & contact us for malware removal, WordPress Security services, WordPress Hosting, and Maintenance Services, and 24/7 support available. For SMB websites, blogs, enterprise websites & agencies. Secure Your WordPress Website Today!
Additionally, our scanner enables you to do security scans to discover infected files and substitute them with healthy files. To use it, you only need to visit the official site. You hit “Scan” and the scanner does the job.
WP Hacked Help team can also help you. They just require all the necessary accesses to enter and perform the necessary updates and cleaning tasks. We can certainly help you Step 3: Remove a malware infection The steps you must follow are:
- Log in to your server via SFTP or SSH.
- Create a backup of your website.
- Search your files for any references to malicious domains or payloads.
- Identify suspicious or recently modified files.
- Restore infected files with copies of the official repository or with a clean backup.
- Replicate the customization made in your files.
- Check that your website is still working after the changes.
If you use the WP Hacked Help scanner, we will suggest the code to remove to make your work easier. You can also edit your file directly from the compare and editor. Step 4: Clean your WordPress database To clean and remove malware from the database, you can use the database administration panel to connect to the database.
- Login to the database administration panel.
- Make a backup of the database.
- Look for suspicious content like spam links.
- Open the table that contains suspicious content and delete it.
- Make sure your website is still working after the changes.
Vous pouvez également rechercher manuellement des fonctions PHP malveillantes, telles que eval, base64_decode, preg_replace, str_replace, etc. Ces fonctions sont également utilisées légitimement par les plugins, alors assurez-vous de tester les modifications afin de ne pas endommager accidentellement votre site Web, blog, ou commerce électronique. Étape 5 : Éliminer les portes dérobées Une fois que vous avez réussi à éliminer l’infection, vous devez rechercher les portes dérobées. Ces portes dérobées sont une autre option permettant aux attaquants d’accéder à votre site Web quand ils le souhaitent et d’affecter le site Web.
Par conséquent, vous devez rechercher des fichiers avec des noms similaires aux fichiers principaux de WordPress qui se trouvent dans le mauvais répertoire.
Les portes dérobées incluent généralement ces fonctions PHP :
base64, str_rot13, gzuncompress, eval, exec, create_function, système, assert, stripslashes, preg_replace (avec / e /), move_uploaded_file.
These functions can also be used by plugins, so be sure to test any changes so as not to cause damage to your website by removing benign functions. Step 6: Remove malware warnings To remove the Google blacklist or malware warnings from your website, you should probably contact your hosting provider. However, don’t forget to ask them to eliminate the suspension of your service since you have cleaned your website. Step 7: Obtain an SSL Certificate Getting an SSL certificate is a quite simple process. However, you sometimes need to pay to certify that your website is reliable, authorized, and trustworthy. Fortunately, SSL certificates are not too expensive.
Once you get the certificate, you still need to configure it before solving “The site ahead contains harmful programs” warning. Step 8: Change your WordPress URL
At this point, your WordPress website is still using an HTTP URL. Before forcing the platform to load via HTTPS, you need to change the main URL.
To do this, log into your WordPress dashboard and go to the Settings> General tab. Here, you will get several options. However, you need to choose – the WordPress Address (URL) and the Site Address (URL).
Now, you need to change both URLs for using HTTPS rather than HTTPS, just adding the additional “s”. Then save your changes on this page.
Maybe you are wondering why you are using two different fields to configure the WordPress URL. Well, this helps in knowing – where exactly are your main files for your site located. On the other hand, the Site address field helps visitors in finding your website.
In most cases, both fields are indistinguishable. However, there is also another option, which allows you to install WordPress core files in a different directory. This would alter the WordPress Address field. Now, the only change you need to make now is to replace HTTP with HTTPS in both fields.
Following this will help in getting rid of Chrome’s “Not Safe” warning. There is only one more thing you need to do before your website can be considered secure (at least by Google standards). Step 9: Implement a 301 Redirect across the Site Now, visitors will be able to access your website through HTTPS. However, some sites can still work using HTTP. They may have saved your old URL or they revisit the website from an old link on an external site.
To get rid of this problem and protect your users, you need to redirect your WordPress from HTTP to HTTPS. You can use various types of redirects, but the best one for this scenario is 301. This is what is called a ‘permanent’ redirect, and it tells search engines that your website has been permanently moved to a new address.
You can use a plugin like Really Simple SSL, to set up a 301 redirect in WordPress which forces WordPress to load over HTTPS. All you need to do is install the plugin, and it will automatically explore for an SSL certificate linked to your website. Once you find one, it will enable HTTPS automatically.
Well, it is quite easy to install the plugin. However, it is not recommended in most cases. Plugins can easily crash due to updates or conflicts. When it comes to key functionality like HTTPS, you may not feel safe depending on a third-party plugin. Step 10: Request a Review from Google To remove the ‘site ahead contains harmful programs’ message, you have to submit your site for review.
But before you do so, you need to sign up or log in to Google Search Console. Verify ownership of your website. We’ve entailed the detailed process of verification in this article – Did Your Website Get Blacklisted by Google?
Once done, you can request a review to remove the Site Ahead Contains Harmful Programs warning in Google Chrome.
- Log in to Search Console and access Security Issues Report.
- Select ‘Request a Review’.
- Fill in the information required on what steps you took to remove the malware and secure your WordPress website.
- Submit your request.
Your review request will be processed between a day to several weeks. You will receive a response in your Messages in Search Console or Google Webmaster account.
Once Google determines that your website is clean, the warning will be removed within 72 hours.
How To Prevent This Warning Message?
Above, we have discussed some effective tips to remove the warning message and other signs from the WordPress website. However, the most significant part is to determine the actual cause and find ways to tackle it.
If Google detects that there is malware on your site, you might get penalized. That’s why it’s important to take necessary preventive measures to get rid of this situation. Use hosting with robust security measures Having a secure website foundation will prevent it from attacks. That’s why it is necessary to pick a hosting plan with strong security measures to keep your business and clients’ safe and risk-free.
Every software is susceptible to having some vulnerability. However, using a web hosting or SSD hosting plan that has anti-hacking security measures will make it difficult for hackers to exploit any security hole in a CMS like WordPress. Its firewall, or an account isolation system like CageFS have safer and secure norms.
NOTE – Update your wordPress salt keys for better security – READ MORE Make sure you have backups While hiring a hosting, it is necessary to ensure whether your provider is providing backup copies if something happens to your website. Having such a secure site will help in restoring your website if your WordPress gets infected. Most often, you make changes to your website over time. However, not creating backup copies of them can be quite frustrating for you. That’s you need to restore a copy and make sure everything is working again in minutes or not.
Know – How to Backup WordPress Database Manually & With Plugins? Keep your website always up to date Keeping your WordPress website, plus applications’ plugins and templates up to date is not only significant in terms of preventing it from malicious attacks but also from hackers trying to sneak onto your website.
For example, a very recent vulnerability was detected in the Client plugin that allowed any user to access the WordPress administration panel without logging in. Do you realize what that can mean? The developers immediately released a security version to correct the problem.
That’s why you need to update your WordPress plugins.
Check for WordPress security updates Use only trusted themes and plugins A worthwhile piece of advice is to avoid using pirated plugins and themes. Usually, pirated plugins contain malware that affects your website and increases the chance of getting hacked. We recommend using plugins that are in the WordPress repository or trustworthy marketplaces like CodeCanyon or ThemeForest. Remove inactive themes and plugins Adding extra and meaningless material to your website will make it easier for hackers to break into your website. And hackers often target plugins and themes to compromise WordPress sites. That’s why it is necessary to keep only the required themes and plugins that you actually use. Delete the unnecessary ones. A security plugin can help you Installing security add-ons on your website will keep you alert if something bad happens. For me, I would only prefer top-rated plugins. Check out our list of best WordPress security plugins in 2022, but in the official WordPress repository, you have a thousand alternatives that help you keep your website safe. Protect the WordPress login One of the valuable measures to take into account is to protect your WordPress website from a user taking control. Sometimes, a strong password or a user other than admin is not enough. That’s it’s necessary to take the required action within a short period of time. So, do the following:
- Change the access URL to your WordPress
- Password protect the wp-admin directory
- Use a Captcha system
When Google Chrome starts showing the warning message “The Site Ahead Contains Harmful Programs” for your website, it is time to take into account the preventive measures to remove the errors as soon as possible. A poor and infected website also puts the visitors in thoughts and pushes them to doubt the professionalism of your website. It will not only harm your reputation but also SEO and conversions.
To protect your WordPress website, you can use a scanner like WP Hacked Help or also a malware analysis tool. In this way, you can detect malicious files and clean them or restore a backup of your website. We can also help you fix your hacked wordpress site in under 5 hrs.
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By kaumil patel / WordPress Errors
There are some things that you really don’t want to see when you visit your website. Right at the top of that list is an internet security alert red screen warning courtesy of the Google Chrome browser. “The site ahead contains harmful programs” is not a welcoming introduction to your website.
The Google Safe Browsing warning is telling potential visitors not to visit your site because there is a dangerous element present.
There are several different warning messages that may be displayed:
- The site ahead contains malware
- Deceptive site ahead
- The site ahead contains harmful programs
- This page is trying to load scripts from unauthenticated sources
- Continue to [site name]?
Those all mean different things, and some are more serious than others. But obviously you don’t want a warning message of any kind being inserted between you and your visitors.
In this tutorial, I’m going to go over a few ways to fix and prevent “The site ahead contains harmful programs,” or “The site ahead contains malware” Google Chrome red screen warning.
Why Does This Screen Appear?
The warning screens are displayed by the Chrome browser when Google has crawled the site and found something in the content that they consider harmful. Elements that trigger the Google Chrome warnings for a WordPress site vary, but can include:
- Malware installed on the website.
- Links to sites that distribute or are infected with malware.
- Certain very outdated content management systems.
- Plugins or themes that have been compromised or are open to compromise.
Even spam in your comments could link to questionable sources and cause a warning. Luckily, it’s easy to protect your WordPress comment section from spam.
You’ll need to do a bit of troubleshooting to discover why your site has been tagged with a warning screen.
Checking Your Site in the Google Search Console
The first thing you should do is check with Google to see why there is a problem. To do so, click the “Security issues” link in the Google Search Console.
If no security issues are present (as shown above), file a report for an incorrect phishing warning. You can do this by visiting Google’s “Report Incorrect Phishing Warning” page.
Complete the form and click the “Submit Report” button.
If the Google Search Console does indicate a problem with your site, click the “More Information,” “Details,” or “Why Was This Website Blocked” link for more information on the cause of the problem.
You can also use the Google Safe Browsing site status page to see exactly where the malicious content is located on your site. Go to: [ht_message mstyle=”info” title=”” show_icon=”” id=”” class=”” style=”” ]https://transparencyreport.google.com/safe-browsing/search?url=ggexample.com[/ht_message]
Change “ggexample.com” above to your domain name, of course.
Google Search Console
The new Google Search Console will break down the issues it found with your site and why it is being flagged. This often appears as a red warning on your site in the console system.
From there, you can click the “Details” link. Google will then give you a brief breakdown of the error.
For instance, Google will tell you where malware is located as it was detected on your site including any subfolders in your directory.
Once you’ve cleaned the files and have fixed the issue, you can submit it for validation in Search Console. The validation process can take a couple of days to complete. And if Google doesn’t find a problem, your site is restored and the “site contains harmful programs” error is removed.
Malware Scanning and Removal
Deleting the malicious content from the specific locations that Google provides is a good start, but that report may not include everything. You’ll want to do a thorough scan and remove all malicious code or software, wherever it’s hiding.
To do that you can use a security scanning plugin or system.
There are many security plugins available when it comes to locking down WordPress. Here are three of my favorites.
Wordfence is a free plugin that comes with a great selection of tools. It will perform regular threat updates, file scanning, and provides a powerful firewall. This is one of the most popular plugins for security with more than two million active installs.
All In One WP Security & Firewall
The All In One WP Security & Firewall plugin is exactly what it sounds like. It includes file system security, blacklist checking, login safety, and backup options. It’s a flexible system that does a great job at protecting your site, and your visitors, from malware.
Another popular plugin for malware scanning is Sucuri Security. It does remote scanning, file integrity monitoring, and includes a hardening system for website security. However, a lot of its more advanced options are only available in the premium version of the software. But if you deal with security problems on an ongoing basis, Sucuri may be well worth the investment.
Check Your Links
Even if your website is safe, it can be flagged for having links to malware-infected sites. If you link to a site that is known to contain malware, your site can be tagged with a “The site ahead contains harmful programs” warning. Since all search engines have safety and security rules to uphold, your site will be guilty by association if you link to websites that are seen as malicious or dangerous.
If you cannot find a source of malware or other threats on your website, you may have been flagged due to a link. So you’ll need to find the links that could be causing the warning for your site.
Sometimes serving ads can cause problems as well. For example, displaying an affiliate banner to a known offender can cause your site to be flagged.
Always check the source of links. Only use safe, quality links when linking to other websites, displaying ads, or selling products.
Some security plugins or systems will do the checking for you automatically. But it’s still a good idea to make sure you’re only adding the best links to your site. Doing so will also help with search engine optimization and demonstrate your website’s relevance and authority.
Deceptive Site Ahead Fix
The “Deceptive site ahead” warning is a little different, so let’s talk about it separately. It can be triggered by malware but is more likely to be triggered by misconfiguration. Most commonly:
- You have a self-signed SSL certificate or you have not installed SSL Certificate properly.
- You do have an SSL certificate installed but you are not redirecting HTTP users to HTTPS.
- There is mixed content on your website. You’ll run into this most often after converting a site to use HTTPS. If script or image links to HTTP URLs remain, that’s mixed content that needs to be fixed.
Removing the Google Warning
After cleaning up your site, you have to let Google know it’s safe. To do that, you file a Security Issues report.
Before you go any further, make very sure that you have fixed the problem. If you ask Google to review your fixes to a compromised site and they continue to find problems, it can increase the time it takes, and the difficulty of getting your site “cleared.”
This Google “Request a review” page describes how to check your site once you believe it’s clean. It also details the steps necessary to complete the Security Issues report. Those steps are different depending on the type of compromise your site has experienced.
Keep a Clean Backup Copy
I suggest that you make a backup copy of your WordPress website. If you run into issues such as this, you can quickly recover by restoring the site.
It’s important to make sure you have a backup copy of a clean site though. The last thing you want to do is restore a backup copy that contains the same malware you’re trying to get rid of.
For that reason, it’s important to keep as many backups you can for as long as you can. Especially if you manage a site that you aren’t updating or checking very often. Sites like those can be compromised for weeks before you realize there’s a problem, so an older backup is essential.
Keep Your Site Healthy
The best way to avoid malware on your site is to take measures to strengthen your security. Never assume your website is too small to be of any interest to hackers or bots. They are looking for vulnerabilities, they don’t care about size or popularity. It’s always better to err on the side of caution.
What is your favorite security plugin for WordPress? How often do you create backups of your site files and database?
06 de octubre de 2022
Domantas G. & Jordana A.
How to Fix the “Deceptive Site Ahead” Error: 4 Steps to Remove It
The last thing anyone wants to see is the “deceptive site ahead” error when opening a site on Google Chrome. This warning message means that the web browser deems the website unsafe to open due to security issues, discouraging visitors from accessing it.
If this warning message appears on your site, you want to fix it as soon as possible. Besides endangering your data’s safety, having Google flag your site will significantly harm its SEO and traffic volume and potentially impact it negatively in other ways.
In this article, we cover the steps to fix the “deceptive site ahead” warning on WordPress websites. You’ll also learn how this warning message affects your site and the ways to prevent it in the first place.
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- What Is the “Deceptive Site Ahead” Warning?
- How Does “Deceptive Site Ahead” Impact Your Site?
- 4 Steps to Remove the “Deceptive Site Ahead” Warning
- 1. Detect the Cause of the Problem
- 2. Back Up Your Site
- 3. Remove Dangerous Website Files
- 4. Request Google to Review Your Site
- How to Prevent the “Deceptive Site Ahead” Warning?
- Invest in Security Plugins and Software
- Use an SSL Certificate
- Do Regular Updates
- Practice Safe Browsing
- Protect Your Site Login
- Manage User Activity
- Pick a Secure Hosting Provider
What Is the “Deceptive Site Ahead” Warning?
“Deceptive site ahead” is a warning message generated by Google Chrome on sites it views as unsafe. Its appearance implies that Google has blocklisted a malicious website due to some security concerns.
The deceptive site warning message is part of Chrome’s security measures to combat frequent cyber attacks. It hinders visitors from accessing potentially dangerous sites that may jeopardize visitors’ sensitive information, such as credit card details and login credentials.
Here’s a breakdown of the “deceptive site ahead” warning message, including its variations and possible causes:
|Error code||Deceptive site ahead|
|Error variations||The site ahead contains malware The site ahead contains harmful programs Deceptive website warning Continue to [website name]? This page is trying to load scripts from unauthenticated sources|
|Error causes||Backlinks to questionable websites or malicious domains Malware infection Malicious files Phishing pages Deceptive content Compromised SSL certificates Virus infection Malicious backdoor code|
How Does “Deceptive Site Ahead” Impact Your Site?
As mentioned earlier, having the “deceptive site ahead” warning appearing on your site indicates that it may have been hacked. As the website owner, you’ll be at risk of having all the site data stolen or deleted.
If malicious code causes extensive damage to your site, you’ll have to spend money to fix the problem. For instance, hiring a WordPress developer to recover the site will cost around $10-$66/hour. This excludes the time it will take to reach out to all involved parties regarding the security breach.
In the worst-case scenario, you may face legal consequences for failing to guard your visitors’ personal information. The issue may destroy your brand’s reputation and lead to lost customer trust. With eCommerce sites, this will negatively impact the company’s conversion and sales rates.
In terms of brand exposure, site traffic will also suffer as Google will actively hinder visitors from accessing the website. Even if you manage to take the hacked site back, you’ll still lose months or even years of hard work put into your WordPress SEO.
Prolonged malware infestation may also prompt your web host to take down the site and suspend your hosting account.
4 Steps to Remove the “Deceptive Site Ahead” Warning
Despite the warning’s indication of malware, sometimes Google flags websites by mistake.
Before submitting a review request to Google, check whether the warning appears on other web browsers besides Chrome. If you have encountered and resolved security issues recently, clearing the browser’s cache will force Chrome to reload the site’s latest version.
Should the “deceptive site ahead” warning persist, follow the steps below to fix the issue. Keep in mind that this tutorial will focus on WordPress websites. That said, some methods may work on sites running on other platforms.
1. Detect the Cause of the Problem
To resolve the warning, you need to locate the source of the problem. First, use Google Safe Browsing to verify your site’s status. This free Google tool will detect any malware or phishing threats that made the web browser deem the website unsafe.
Google Search Console, previously known as Google Webmaster Tools, has a similar feature that detects security issues within websites. However, this method will only work if you have connected the site to Google Search Console and still have access to the platform.
Alternatively, deep scan your website using a malware scanner. This method is ideal for users with limited technical knowledge, as the tool will do all the work for you. Plenty of online malware scanners like SiteGuarding and Quttera offer this service for free.
If you’re familiar with coding and scripting languages, you may opt for the manual route. Use the developer tools to inspect Chrome’s elements and check the site’s source code for suspicious third-party elements. Then, compare your findings with the original files via Hostinger’s File Manager to identify any compromised files.
When checking your website manually, take note of new themes and plugins you recently installed. Hackers tend to exploit themes’ and plugins’ vulnerabilities with cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks, prompting visitors to execute malicious scripts on their browsers.
Additionally, pay special attention to recently modified files as they are very likely to be infected. Connect to an SSH terminal and type the “ls” Linux command to list all directories’ files and their detailed information, such as dates of creation and permissions.
We recommend using PuTTY as your SSH client. This free software works on Windows, Linux, and macOS operating systems.
Here are some of the most common causes of the “deceptive site ahead” error:
- Malware and virus infection
- URL injection
- Phishing pages
- Vulnerabilities in plugins and themes
- Suspicious backlinks
- Spam content
Important! If you, Google services, and the malware scanner cannot find any infected files within your website, Google might have blacklisted it by mistake. Report incorrect phishing warning to Google for warning removal ‒ we’ll provide more information on this process in the fourth step of this tutorial.
2. Back Up Your Site
Before making any changes to the infected website’s source code, make sure to back up the site files and databases. Doing so allows you to compare files and restore any lost data after the malware cleanup process.
There are several ways to back up a WordPress website ‒ using a WordPress backup plugin, the web host’s backup solution, or manually via FTP and phpMyAdmin.
Various backup plugins are there to automate your backup process. Here are our recommendations for the best freemium WordPress backup plugins:
- BackupWPup ‒ offers cloud-based storage, database check and repair, and scheduled backups.
- UpdraftPlus ‒ provides email reporting and multilingual support.
- Duplicator ‒ supports manual backups and file bundling.
Most web hosting providers offer an automatic site backup solution. Hostinger, for example, provides a one-click backup and restore feature accessible via hPanel.
Alternatively, backup your site files manually using your web hosting’s file manager or the FileZilla FTP Client. phpMyAdmin should also be available via the hosting dashboard ‒ Hostinger users can access it to back up databases via hPanel.
Important! Keep the backup separated from the files that aren’t infected by malware.
3. Remove Dangerous Website Files
Once you’ve identified the malicious code or infected website files, proceed to remove them.
WordPress users may install a security plugin to detect and remove malware from their sites. We recommend using Wordfence, a popular security plugin equipped with WordPress-optimized security features, such as a web application firewall and a server-side scanner.
Follow these steps to remove malware from a WordPress site using Wordfence:
- Install the plugin Wordfence Security from the WordPress repository and activate it.
- Navigate to Wordfence -> Scan -> Start New Scan from your WordPress dashboard.
- The list of the detected issues will be available in the Results Found section. Click on the Repair All Repairable Files button to fix the corrupted files.
Infected websites running on other content management systems may use a malware removal tool instead. Most malware scanner tools provide malware removal services, allowing you to delete infected files with a single click.
If you already have a backup from before your site was infected, restore it to replace the corrupted files. As some hosting providers keep backups for a limited time, contact your hosting provider for assistance if needed.
Important! Seek out a professional if you aren’t confident in your technical skills. Deleting the wrong files or code may further damage your WordPress website.
4. Request Google to Review Your Site
After making sure that your site is free from malware, the last step is to send a review request to Google so that the warning is removed.
Google Search Console provides a direct channel to submit your appeal. Navigate to Security & Manual Actions -> Security Issues from the dashboard, then select Request a Review. The request should include information on the actions you take to resolve the issue.
Appeals for hacked websites generally require several weeks to process. Meanwhile, requests for phishing and malware issues take up to several days to review.
If Google approves your request, the search engine will lift your site from its blacklist and re-index the web pages. The “deceptive site ahead” warning will disappear from your site within 72 hours.
Important! Make sure your site is completely free of any security issues before requesting a review. Having your request rejected numerous times will prompt Google into giving your site a Repeat Offender status for 30 days. You cannot request additional reviews during that period.
How to Prevent the “Deceptive Site Ahead” Warning?
While there are ways to fix the “deceptive site ahead” warning error, it takes time and a lot of effort to resolve it. Therefore, we recommend taking preventive measures to minimize the risk of this issue occurring.
Here are some measures to debug WordPress and prevent the “deceptive site ahead” warning error:
Invest in Security Plugins and Software
While your WordPress website already has built-in security features, installing security plugins will further strengthen its defenses against malware attacks.
Numerous WordPress security plugins are available in the official directory and various marketplaces at different prices. Security software equips you with firewalls and security scanners to block malicious traffic and requests containing infected content before they can do any damage to your website.
Since free versions usually offer limited features, consider investing in premium plugins to get advanced security tools.
Here are our recommendations for the best WordPress security plugins besides Wordfence:
- Sucuri ($199.99-$499.99/year) ‒ offers malware and hack removal, advanced security scanning, and blocklist monitoring and removal services.
- Jetpack ($4.77-$47.97/month, billed annually) ‒ provides automated backups, malware scanners, and website optimization tools.
- All In One WP Security (free) ‒ comes with brute force login attack prevention, file change detection scanner, and front-end text copy protection features.
Your computer’s security is no less important. Antivirus and anti-malware software is a must-have tool for any active internet user as it will prevent your local system from being infected.
The following are some of the best antivirus and anti-malware software to protect your computer:
- Kaspersky ($29.99/year for three devices)
- Bitdefender Antivirus Plus ($29.99/year for three devices)
- Norton Antivirus Plus ($19.99/year per device)
- McAfee Antivirus ($34.99/year per device)
- ESET NOD32 Antivirus ($39.99/year per device)
Use an SSL Certificate
Security Sockets Layer (SSL) is an encryption-based protocol that secures connections between servers and browsers. A website that has an SSL certificate will transmit data using Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) as indicated by https:// at the start of its URL and a padlock icon in the address bar.
Google pushes websites to get an SSL certificate to promote internet safety. Besides making SSL one of the ranking factors, it also flags websites that haven’t moved to HTTPS with the deceptive site warning.
If your WordPress site doesn’t have an SSL certificate yet, we recommend getting one as soon as possible to enjoy all SSL benefits. Other than avoiding Google’s penalty, enabling it will boost your site’s branding and attract higher traffic volumes.
Some hosting providers, like Hostinger, include a free SSL certificate with their hosting services. Alternatively, purchase one from a Certified Authority ‒ an organization that issues digital certificates for data encryption.
Once you have obtained an SSL certificate, don’t forget to redirect your website to HTTPS. Otherwise, visitors will still access it via HTTP protocol.
Do Regular Updates
Building your website on content management systems like WordPress allows for better scalability and customization. However, users are responsible for maintaining it independently to ensure optimal performance and security.
Keeping the website’s system and supporting software updated is one of the most important tasks. In WordPress, this means updating WordPress core files, themes, and plugins to the latest version.
Besides improving the site’s performance, updates patch security vulnerabilities discovered in the previous versions. Therefore, updating your website regularly will optimize its security against malware.
Users can enable WordPress auto-updates to save time and minimize the chance of human error.
Important! Back up your website before doing major core release updates to avoid losing data in case the update fails.
Practice Safe Browsing
Obtaining files or software from dangerous websites puts you at risk for malware, viruses, and identity theft. That’s because hackers usually disguise malware as executable files that run malicious software after you click on them.
Malware may get into your device through illegal downloads, fake security pop-ups, and phishing emails. Hackers also often lure users into accessing a fake site and giving out their personal information.
Therefore, you should always be vigilant when browsing the web, particularly when looking for a file or software to download.
The following are tips for practicing safe browsing:
- Download files from reputable, verified sites only.
- Pay attention to malware warnings.
- Avoid clicking on security pop-ups and ads about security vulnerabilities within your device.
- Scan files and software for malware and viruses before opening them.
- Be wary of .exe and .scr file extensions, especially if you’re downloading non-executable files.
Your device may have malware if it suddenly crashes, won’t shut down or restart, or doesn’t let you remove particular software. Suspicious toolbars and icons may appear on your desktop and browser. You may also see ads and pop-ups when opening legitimate sites.
If your device displays these unusual behaviors, immediately run a deep scan with your antivirus or seek professional help.
Protect Your Site Login
One of the best ways to improve your WordPress security is by securing the login page. Doing so will help prevent brute force attacks which use trial-and-error to crack login credentials.
As the site’s administrator, the least you can do is use secure login credentials. Create a strong and unique username and password using a combination of numbers, upper- and lowercase letters, and special characters. Plenty of password generators can generate a strong password in one click.
Another way to reinforce your login page is to enable 2FA authentication. The extra layer of security can be unlocked by inputting a unique code generated by a third-party authentication application like Google Authenticator.
Some WordPress security plugins like Wordfence Login Security lets you enable 2FA authentication on your site.
To further strengthen your site security, add password protection for website directories. This security practice limits access to parts of your website.
Hostinger users can follow these steps to password-protect their site:
- Navigate to Other -> Password Protect Directories from hPanel.
- Select the Directory textbox and pick which directory you want to protect. Add a chosen username and password to the respective textboxes.
- Click Protect. All the password-protected directories will appear on this page.
Manage User Activity
A hacked WordPress site usually shows unusual user activities. They indicate that someone has performed unauthorized actions using a compromised user account or a newly created ghost account.
Keeping track of user activity logs and restricting users’ access will minimize this security risk. Knowing all the changes made to the site will also make fixing errors easier.
Various WordPress activity logs and tracking plugins like Simple History and WP Activity Log provide all the tools you need to make your job easier. We recommend choosing a plugin that has instant notification and reporting features.
Additionally, utilize WordPress user roles and permissions to limit users’ access within your site based on their authority. If WordPress’s default roles don’t meet your needs, create new ones or edit the existing roles. You can manage user roles by navigating to Users -> All Users from your WordPress dashboard.
Elija un proveedor de alojamiento seguro
Además de los sitios web, los piratas informáticos también se dirigen a los servidores web al comprometer las cuentas de alojamiento. Como parte de sus servicios, las empresas de alojamiento web son responsables de proteger todos los datos alojados en sus servidores. Por esta razón, es importante elegir un proveedor de alojamiento con las mejores medidas de seguridad del servidor.
Los usuarios de WordPress que no son expertos en tecnología deben alojar sus sitios en servidores administrados de WordPress. Este tipo de alojamiento se ocupa de la seguridad del sistema y automatiza las actualizaciones para los usuarios, minimizando la posibilidad de errores humanos causados por conocimientos técnicos limitados.
All WordPress hosting plans managed by Hostinger come with a free SSL certificate and LiteSpeed’s hidden engine. After supporting WordPress las 24 horas, los 7 días de la semana, Hostinger also made weekly backup copies of the website.
The “Deceptive Site Ahead” message is a Google Safe Browsing erreur d’annonce that appears on websites that are considered unsafe for visitors. The causes of security breaches range from hacking attempts and malware infections to poor site security practices, such as invalid SSL certificates.
Here is a summary of what you need to do to remove the deceptive site ahead warning message:
- Meet and identify the cause of the problem.
- Have a copy of your website security.
- Delete files from dangerous websites.
- Request a Google to review the site.
That said, it’s best to prevent the problem from occurring in the first place. Do this by investing in security plugins and a reputable SSL certificate. Plus, always practice safe browsing and regularly update your core WordPress files, plugins, and themes.
We hope this article will help you remove the “deceptive site ahead” warning message from your website. Good luck !
Aprenda a resolver of other WordPress errors
How to resolve “There was a critical error on your website” error How to fix database connection errors in WordPress How to resolve internal server error (500) in WordPress How to fix upload_max_filesize errors in WordPress How to resolve upload_max_filesize errors in WordPress error max_execution_time Exceeded How to fix “Parse Error: Syntax Error, Unexpected” in WordPress How to fix broken permalinks in WordPress
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Domantas leads content and SEO teams with fresh ideas and fresh approaches. Armed with extensive SEO and marketing knowledge, he aims to bring Hostinger to every corner of the world. In his spare time, Domantas enjoys honing his web development skills and traveling to exotic locations.
Plus de Domantas G.
Jordana is a digital content writer at Hostinger. With her knowledge of information systems and website development, she aims to help aspiring developers and entrepreneurs develop their technical skills. In her free time, she travels and enjoys free writing.
More from Jordana A.
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