There are so many issues associated with being a social blogger. As part of a great social network you want very much to work hand in hand with bloggers the world over. Unfortunately, as careful as we might like to be there are always those unscrupulous that seek to lie, cheat, steal and impersonate in order to deceive innocent people who connect with them. Much to her dismay and utter embarrassment Jenn from Pink Ninja Media and Jenn’s Blah Blah blog has been facing issues with malware that somehow has gotten attached to her domain. The issue this creates for the rest of us on the outside is we have to remove all links, images, giveaways, etc. from our websites which are tied to her blogs in any way. If we don’t we will be subjected to the same blocking that her site and others associated with it have been since this morning.
Thanks to Chrome’s security features this is the Malware message I received this morning when going to another blog (I contacted them and they have since remedied the situation and are no longer blocked by Chrome). I was going to actively contact Jenn but when I went to her blog fan page on Facebook she noted she was already well aware of the problem and was actively trying to fix it. I am monitoring her Facebook fanpage for news of when this will be remedied. Internet Explorer 9 and Firefox did not have any issues with the site or pages where her links were found which for me calls into question Microsoft’s and Mozilla’s level of online security.
If you have noticed, the Luxurious Bamboo Sheets Giveaway is no longer listed on my site. It is in private mode (only I can see reference to it) until I receive word from Jenn’s Blah Blah blog that it is safe to put up again. Those of you who have entered, please, don’t fret. Your entries are safe as are the comments you’ve made. I realized that I posted the signup announcement for that giveaway on my other blog Casa Guanajuato/The Frogtown House Reviews. To my horror the whole site was blocked because the signup was still showing up on the home page. It was curious to me that even though the Luxurious Bamboo Sheets giveaway link was on the home page of this blog that I was not blocked immediately. Then it dawned on me – I saved the images locally so that reference was not to her blog, but to my own. The links were not until I got to the body of the post. Not so on my other blog, doh!
Don’t let stuff like this dissuade you from being a social blogger. If you are on the internet in any capacity – designer, coder, marketer, blogger or merely casual observer – you run the risk of being victimized by unscrupulous individuals. So, how do you protect yourself?
- Invest in a good quality firewall, malware scanner, anti-virus software for your computer. Malware doesn’t only hurt your computer but is coded to find and steal personally identifiable information. Protect your identity, assets and bank accounts with a good firewall/anti-virus/anti-malware suite. I use McAfee Total Protection.
- Use a browser with built in AntiVirus and AntiMalware services like Google Chrome. Not only is it faster than IE and Firefox, but I feel infinitely more secure using it.
- Before you agree to linkup or share anything that is on another website look at what is linked on their site. If they indiscriminately link to everyone and anything it might be a good idea to steer clear.
- When you do post make sure to include the name of the blog in your tags or at the very least in the copy because – if you use WordPress – you will be able to search for that blog by keyword so that you can set the post back to Private or Draft mode.
- If you do find that a site you’ve linked to is infected or has become a portal for Malware – DON’T FREAK OUT.
- Search for the name or URL of the offending site on your blog – posts and pages
- Once found set the pages and/or posts to draft or private
- Chrome will not even allow you to enter the edit screen for these posts because the links can be followed from there, but you can do a Quick Edit from the post/page list screen
- If you want to try and change or remove the links but keep your content – at your discretion you can click on the Advanced Options link as shown in the image above and choose to Proceed at Your Own Risk.
- Be kind and contact the offending site. Don’t be angry, just think how you would feel if your site was the one affecting others. They may not even be aware that there is an issue.
Thanks and keep on being a social blogger.