Hostgator Account Suspended? Here is How to Fix the Issue
For a website owner, few things are as horrifying as waking up to an email alerting you that your website is suspended. It’s normal to worry and panic as you read the email. The longer your website is offline, the more you stand to lose your traffic, potential customers, revenue, and reputation. But don’t worry because we’ve got you covered. With this article, we will help you get your website up and running shortly. We’ll walk you through the HostGator suspension email. And show you why your hosting account was suspended and how to remove the suspension. This can be related to other domain names as well. We’ll also show you how to prevent this from happening again.
If your website is hacked and you are looking for ways to clean your site, you can do it with our WordPress malware removal plugin. It cleans websites in a jiffy. But cleaning your site is only half of the work. The other half involves fixing vulnerabilities and asking HostGator to review your site. To do this, you’ll have to return and read this article.
Why Did HostGator Suspend Your Site?
HostGator carries out routine scans of websites hosted on its server as all other WordPress hosting providers do. During this process, if they detect websites with malicious activities going on, they investigate the site. If they are convinced that the site is hacked and could affect other websites on the same dedicated server, or among other sites on shared servers, they suspend the site and notify the owner. That’s what happened to your WordPress site.The longer your website is offline, the more you stand to lose your traffic, potential customers, revenue, and reputation. Get your site cleaned this instant. Click To Tweet
Right below, we have a copy of a similar email by HostGator –
Let’s take a moment to dissect the mail.
In the first paragraph, HostGator informs you about the presence of malware on your website and that is the reason they have suspended your site.
In the next paragraph, HostGator tells you to remove malware from your site. It also warns you that if you don’t clean your site within the next 60 days, they’ll be forced to take further action and could even permanently suspend your website.
In the final paragraph, the web hosts tell you to revert back on the same thread after you have cleaned your site.
We’ll show you how to implement all of these in the next section.
How to Fix Website Suspended by HostGator?
You will need to take a few steps to unsuspended your site.
Step 1: Clean Your Website
You can remove malware on your own, i.e. manually or by using a plugin.
Is Removing Malware Manually Effective?
It may seem to many of our readers that manually removing malware is a good option. But that’s usually not the case.
There are two obstructions – firstly, you will have to have technical knowledge regarding WordPress to be able to work with it. While there videos and articles that you can follow to learn how to manually remove malware but they rarely help you to clean your site completely. Malware could be anywhere on your website. In a tutorial, they’ll show you how to clean a few areas where they have found malware on their websites. Malware on your website could be located in a different place.
And secondly, manually cleaning a site is a time-consuming task for people who know their ways around WordPress. It’s an even more prolonged process for someone starting from scratch.
And that’s why it’s best to use a security plugin to clean your site.
Cleaning Website Using a Plugin
While there are many security plugins that you can choose from, not all plugins are effective. Some only do a surface-level scan, looking into only a few files and folders where malware is generally present. Others only look for known malware and are incapable of finding new ones or even complex ones.
MalCare Security Plugin overcomes these shortcomings.
- The tool runs a deep scan and combs through the entire website and not just the locations where malware is generally found. That way it makes sure that it finds all malware infecting your website sand then cleans it.
- It’s also designed to find not only known malware but also new and complex ones. How? While many other plugins look for known malware, MalCare goes one step ahead and checks the pattern and behavior of codes that may not look malicious right off the bat. There are malicious codes disguised to look like normal code. By checking their pattern and behavior, MalCare learns whether a code is malicious or not. That’s how it finds malware and it’s worth noting that such deep investigation lowers the chances of false positives.
- Moreover, MalCare has a unique take on cleanups. It enables users to clean their website themselves with just a click of a button. The reason, generally clean up takes a long time. With other plugins, you’ll need to request for a clean up and then a security person will access your site and initiate a cleanup. The process could take a few days. Meanwhile, your site loses traffic and revenue, or worse, it could be blacklisted by search engines like Google. Keeping urgency in mind, MalCare offers a one-click automatic cleaner.
Ready to clean your site with MalCare?
Cleaning Your Hacked Site With MalCare
1. Download and install the WordPress security plugin on your website. Then add your website on the MalCare dashboard. The plugin will start to scan your site automatically. Once done, it’ll show you how many hacked files it found.
2. Now, all that’s left to do is clean your site. You can do that by clicking on the Auto-Clean button.
3. Once your site is clean, you can run another scan by navigating to Security > Scan Site from the dashboard to double-check that it’s 100% clean.
And that’s it. Your site is now clean and so you can proceed to the next step.
Step 2: Fix the Vulnerability That Caused The Hack
When you received an email from HostGator, did it ever cross your mind how did your site get hacked in the first place?
Hackers were able to access your website through vulnerabilities. It could be vulnerable themes, plugins, or a rouge user.
i. Fix vulnerable Themes, Plugins & Core:
As with any other software, vulnerabilities creep into themes, plugins and the WordPress core. Updates released by developers help patch these vulnerabilities. So if you have pending updates, implement them right away. For plugins and themes, make sure you are updating not just the active ones but also the inactive ones. Learn more about the importance of WordPress updates.
ii. Remove Pirated Themes and Plugins:
Using free software is tempting especially if its a pirated one. But unknown to many of you, pirated software has malware like backdoors pre-installed on them. When you activate pirated software on your site, backdoors are activated too and they enable hackers to access your website. Remove any pirated themes or plugins you are using and vow never to use them in the future.
iii. Employ Least Privileged Principles:
There are 6 levels of users on a WordPress website. The highest level is that of an Admin. An Admin has complete control of the site. He or she can access all pages, posts, and configurations. The role of an admin should be restricted to only people who can be trusted. Make sure you’ve assigned admin access to only people you trust.
Taking these basic steps will help you fix the vulnerability that lead to the hack and eventual suspension of the website.
Step 3: Ask HostGator to Review Your Site & Unsuspend It
Now that your site is clean and you’ve fixed vulnerabilities, all that’s left to do is inform HostGator about it.
In the email that we shared with you in the previous section, HostGator informs you to reply in the same thread. If it’s not clearly instructed how you’ll inform the web host about your clean site, we suggest you can get in touch with them. You can get on a live chat, email them or even call them.
Make sure you tell them that you have removed malware from your site and fixed the vulnerability. HostGator will then check your site, and upon finding that it’s clean and secure, they will unsuspend it within a few days or less.
Step 4: Google Blacklist Removal (Optional)
It’s not uncommon to find websites that are suspended by their web host to also be blacklisted by Google. The search engine giant wants to protect its users by keeping them away from hacked websites. Hacked websites have a reputation of exploiting users by tricking them into sharing their credit card details or downloading malicious software into your system among other things.
Google crawls your site regularly looking out for new content that could be useful to its users. In the process, if it finds malicious activities, it’s likely to blacklist your site. To find out if you are blacklisted, you can use these tools – isbanned.com and ismywebsitepenalized.com. Just enter your URL and they’ll show you if your site is penalized.
If the result comes positive, that is, your site is blacklisted. Follow this guide to remove Google blacklist warning.
Getting your site suspended could be a wake call that you needed to take security more seriously. This is not related only with Hostgator account or their hosting company. Most website owners think their websites are immune to hack attacks because they are not as big as TechCrunch or The Hollywood Reporter. But the truth is, hackers, prefer targeting small and medium-sized websites because these websites are often lax about security. It makes them an easy target.
If you don’t want to be a victim of another hack attempt, then it’s best to take certain WordPress security measures and use a security plugin. If you’ve installed MalCare Security Plugin, it will make sure that it accurately identifies the most complex malware. Not just that, the plugin will help clean your site instantly. And with its inbuilt powerful cloud-based firewall MalCare will ensure that your website is getting round-the-clock website protection.
Try MalCare – One time set up, a lifetime of peace!
Jajwalya is a WordPress enthusiast, and enjoys sharing their experience with fellow enthusiasts. On the MalCare blog, Jajwalya distils the wisdom gained from building plugins to solve security issues that admins face.