Theme Layout

[Rightsidebar]

Boxed or Wide or Framed

[Boxed]

Theme Translation

Display Featured Slider

Featured Slider Styles

[Fullwidth]

Display Grid Slider

Grid Slider Styles

Display Trending Posts

5/recent posts

Display Author Bio

Brenda has been writing since grade school. She attended journalism school where she majored in professional writing. She loves to decorate, garden, read and spend time with her Yorkies.

Display Instagram Footer

[No]
Brenda Pruitt. Powered by Blogger.

Search This Blog

Loading...

When Someone Hijacks Your Blog URL


A few months ago, I stumbled upon the fact that someone had hijacked my blog URL. 


What this means is that your blog URL is there, but instead of it going to YOUR blog, it goes instead to THEIRS.

I first noticed it at BlogTopSites.

You would click on my blog ranking, and it would go to this Italian blog with, shall I say, somewhat unsavory content. 

I let BlogTopSites know. They said they didn't see anything. Miraculously it was okay. So I thought: All right. This crazy thing is over. 

But it wasn't. She/Whoever came back. Because even though I could click over to her blog, how do I know that wasn't a front also?

Then I noticed it on my Facebook account, and immediately deleted it. Yes, it would be nice to show advertisers your social media accounts. In fact they demand that. But not if your own blog URL, Cozy Little House, is going to content you'd really rather they not see. 



Then I noticed it on blog rolls. I'd email the blog owner and ask her to please go to my blog on her blog roll. I knew it would go to this Italian blog, because I had checked. 

So I would ask if she'd please take it off and put it back on again with my URL, and hope she didn't come back and change it again, unbeknownst to the blog owner. 

So if you happen to have me on your blog roll, please click on it and make sure it is going to MY blog, and not in fact an Italian blog that you can instantly tell is SO not me. 

The other day, I noticed it was Twitter. Does this look like content I would tweet?


''YOUNG GIRLS NEED TO LEARN THAT SEXINESS ISN'T ABOUT BEING NAKED''
I don't know how far this has gone. Accounts I may have forgotten I've opened? Old email addresses I might have forgotten to delete?

This is one reason my revenue is down. Because this person is hijacking my blog URL and somehow having my traffic go to her blog. Which means I am not getting my own traffic. 

She was blatant enough to have her email on her blog, so I emailed her and told her to stay off my accounts. Of course, as I've mentioned, this may be a front and "she" may not even exist.

I looked at Twitter this morning, and it seems they have taken her tweets off, thank goodness. One of the tweets was showing the link to her Instagram account. I don't have the sort of phone whereas I can even have an Instagram account! 

So please, look at your blog rolls at least once per month. I see so many blog rolls and you click and the blog has been deleted long ago. Or not updated in years. 



Please pay better attention to these things. You might be able to tell a blog owner that her blog URL is being hijacked just like mine is, and she will be ever so thankful that you brought it to her attention so she could take some form of action. 

Please take the time to take these links off. You don't know who is looking at links that don't seem to be getting much action, and then, thinking no one will notice, quietly taking them over. Plus Google frowns on links that are not going anywhere. Or to the wrong places.

Think of a house that is left vacant for some time. All sorts of problems normally ensue. The plumbing, the electricity. Because if someone isn't living there day-to-day, then things break down. And by the time you discover it, there is lots of damage to your property. 

Same goes with the internet. There are bad people out there, just waiting to steal your identity, your blog ranking, your blog URL, your blog traffic where you bring in income. 

I have no idea how they accomplish it, but they do. And suddenly people read things you've apparently written that you would never ever write. 

This is an injustice, but with the worldwide internet, there are many wolves in sheep's clothing. You CANNOT be too careful. 
So today, write down a list on paper of possible places you might have opened an account and then forgotten about it. 

Check others' blog rolls and make sure your link is actually going to you. 

Delete accounts you are not actively participating in. I cannot stress how important this is. While you're at it, create stronger passwords for accounts where you do participate on a regular basis. 

I wondered what had happened to my blog traffic, but I was with that blog network and had no insight to was was really going on while they were at the helm. Plus I was dealing with other things in my life that you already know about.

We have to be responsible and not grow complacent. Because someone out there is possibly watching to see if your guard is down, and they will go in and steal everything you have worked so hard for.
Cozy Little House
88 Comments
Share :

88 comments:

  1. Wow, that's awful! It never ceases to amaze me how many rotten people that there are in the world. :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why would they want to claim someone else's work and not their own? I don't get it.

      Delete
  2. Brenda, I am so glad you figured out what was happening. That is so scary and so awful. I'll check you on my blog roll now. Stay Vigilant is a great motto!

    Linda

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was wrong. I see she has Tweets all over my Twitter account. Sigh.

      Delete
  3. So sorry this happened to you. I don't know how they are able to hack things so easily. Nothing is safe anymore.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, nothing is safe. But we can't hide in a closet with a blanket over our head. Gotta keep going.

      Delete
  4. Ugh! This is so frustrating. Some may not understand, but when your blog is your business, it is heartbreaking to deal with these things. I hope it is getting fixed. I'll keep an eye out on my blog roll... so far, so good! Hope your day is good, and you don't have to deal with this again!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No telling how long she/or whoever has been at this. Probably while that blog network had my ads and I wasn't being very vigilant.

      Delete
  5. Brenda, I saw in my stats not long ago my blog address, but not .com. Instead it had .ru.

    I did not click on it but is that something I should be worried about?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .ru is a website in Russia. Yeah, I'd say you should be worried.

      Delete
    2. Yes, yes, yes!!! .ru is from Rumania, I believe. Dig deeper and check it out.

      Delete
    3. no, wait.
      That changed LONG ago.
      Your Blogger stats will show up with various country codes. It is all properly your blog.
      Nothing to worry about. I did have all the official info from Blogger at the time.

      Delete
  6. Oh Brenda, I am so sorry. When my WP account was hacked, part of the hack was adding new URL's to my site and directing them to overseas shopping sites. Luckily, they were power tool sites, noting scandalous, nevertheless, it wasn't my site and Google does frown on that. I did not lose traffic,since they weren't redirecting my entire blog URL, but it took a long time to clean up when I got back to Blogger and I check all the time now. I was hoping that since I was on Blogger now, the chances of that kind of redirect would be much less common. Apparently, not so. I hope this gets worked out soon. Is there anyone you can report the site to?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I'm pretty sure she started out at TopBlogSites and got my URL and then somehow just got everything else. I don't think you can make your password resilient enough, or even watch everything 24/7. There are just some bad eggs in the world.

      Delete
  7. Horrible! But hopefully this is the answer to getting your ads back up and running. Whew, the internet can be great but it can also be a nightmare!

    Mary

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thank you so much for sharing this with us. I will keep an eye out for you. I did notice on my blog stats URLs were coming from strange websites overseas that have nothing to do with decorating. Not sure if this is some kind of HACK.....but anyway... I HOPE things get fixed for you soon!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think we'd better really watch things and confer with one another and stay on top of this stuff. They probably figure a bunch of bloggers like us won't catch on or notice for quite a while.

      Delete
  9. Thanks for the heads-up Brenda. Just checked and I came right here from the link on my side bar.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is one reason I read blogs from my blog roll. So I can see if anything unusual is going on.

      Delete
  10. I have seen that with several blogs that are on my blog list. I've tried to go in an unfollow them and don't seem to be able to do that. It scares me!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't have the answers. We just have to be careful and watch these fools while they try to rip us off.

      Delete
  11. Wow - that is just scary and maddening I'm sure! Thanks for the heads up - I noticed a traffic source to my website that had the same unsavory content. I'm off to report it now! I don't want any links to those type of sources. Glad you fixed it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I haven't fixed it really. No telling how many blog rolls have my URL on them and she has them redirected to her. I can't make any money while she's doing this!

      Delete
  12. I have my Blog on Twitter and it was hijacked once, gladly I recuperated it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't often use the Twitter account. May just have to delete it.

      Delete
  13. Brenda I had the problem that your blog was showing in blogger dashboard and so was hers. She was using what I thought was your old url. I tried all kinds of things to delete it from my blog roll including sending a message to blogger asking how to remove it and telling them what was going on. If it ever happens again I know to let the blogger know immediatly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, she got my current URL. Yes, we MUST tell one another! They can wreak all kinds of damage!

      Delete
  14. So glad you got it taken care of Brenda...thanks so much for sharing!
    Blessings,
    Cindy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know that I'll ever have it completely taken care of. I can't reach everyone.

      Delete
  15. That is crazy - never even knew that could happen or how! Glad you got it straightened out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't know it could happen either. And I won't have it straightened out until I get her completely off my accounts. Just checked and she's back on Twitter as me, directing traffic to her site. Go look. It's under Cozy Little House. I guess you can see it, I don't know.

      Delete
  16. Oh my gosh Brenda! You have enough to deal with without this crap!! What a hassle! So sorry :(.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was going on when I was getting my diagnosis, and I just didn't know what to do. I was wrung out from everything. So I alerted BlogTopSites first, and somehow that day they looked, she wasn't on there. I turned around and there she was again, driving traffic to her site.

      Delete
  17. Brenda, please tell everyone exactly HOW to delete inactive blog sites from blog roll. That will be helpfyul to many.

    Great post / reminder. Appreciate the heads up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What I mean is, lots of bloggers have blogs on their blog roll that they haven't checked in ages. Bloggers delete their accounts, go private, or just stop blogging. So then that URL just sits there, like an empty house waiting on intruders. Check links going out. I really don't know what all we can do. But I'm going to be watchful and let anyone know if something looks suspicious on their site.

      Delete
  18. Holy smokes. Can't believe that!! Glad you figured it out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I figured out what was going on, so now I have to try and stop her. I emailed her, but what good will that do. I'm sure I seem very scary.

      Delete
  19. Oh my goodness, how terrible! I will instantly let you know if I see anything amiss regarding your blog. I hope you have no more problems. Thanks for explaining this issue!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I appreciate your doing that.

      Delete
  20. How do they think of all the things they do????? I have never had a problem with
    your link going anywhere else, but I know what a nightmare it was when someone hacked into all of my sites and blogger shut down my blog. xo Laura

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I normally watch things fairly closely. Then I wasn't making hardly any money with that blog network. They said my traffic was down. But they had all my ads, so I couldn't really tell. So once I got off there, I could see something was amiss. Then I happened to click on my URL on BlogTopSites and boy did I get an eyeful. It's at the bottom of my sidebar if you want to check.

      Delete
  21. This is one of the many reasons I decided not to have a blog! I saw this going on with my Insta account and when I tried to stop it, the person threatened my life. Its not worth it, I keep a very small online presence and will never blog. I hear much of this goes on with Pinterest so I dropped that right away and do not bother with it. I think this type of crime is going to become even worse in years to come. This is so terrible, I hope it stops soon but I fear it will go on unless someone very computer savy can fix it for you Brenda

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I have to make money, so I don't have any choice. And I truly love to blog. I'm not going to let them take this away from me, that's for sure.

      Delete
  22. How awful! I'm so glad you shared this information. Hopefully you will get everything straightened out and you probably have prevented someone else from problems by sharing. Thanks for all you do!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just like maintenance you do on your car or anywhere else, check links on your blog roll. Watch for suspicious activity or traffic. If a blogger hasn't blogged in a year, that link is just sitting there waiting for someone to get it. Like someone steals an identity after seeing a name in a cemetery.

      Delete
  23. Just coming back to your blog after going through my blog roll. Fortunately, every one of them clicked through to the proper blog, including yours. I had no idea this could ever happen (I'm still pretty naive about blogging and hackers)! Thanks so much for alerting your readers to this. Hope your blog traffic gets back to normal and that your ad problems are a thing of the past. Thanks again!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    2. Well, I'm pretty naive too! When I first saw it click through to her site, I thought my eyes had tricked me. So I kept clicking it and thought: How on earth is my URL going to this Italian blog? I have no idea how it was done.

      Delete
    3. I was writing a reply, and all day long this box keeps popping up asking for some strange place to access my info, so it ate my reply, Ruth. Have no idea if that is related. Don't click on anything you are not familiar with!

      Delete
  24. I would expect that a company like Google that fronts Blogger would KNOW about this kind of b.s. and come up with ways to protect innocent bloggers from their sites being hijacked! This is disgusting, but it wouldn't happen unless the service providers and sites that offer you services to host websites and blogs wouldn't wash their hands of such things claiming 'no liability.'

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I pay $14.99 per month to Cox Tech Support and have them go over my computers for malware, etc. And it still does not stop them.

      Delete
  25. Those are great suggestions! I need to clean up my blogroll. I'm sure there are some inactive ones that should be removed. Yours, is going to your blog, btw.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Kelly. We have to check out those blogs and make sure they're still up and running. And if they aren't, get rid of the links to them.

      Delete
  26. OMG, that's terrible! Your on my blog roll and I checked it does go to you! I think its naive to think a company cares if your being hijacked when using blogger is free? Maybe I'm missing something! This awful and so sorry it happened to you. Great information to know and be on the lookout for!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, Blogger is owned by Google. And Google has some of the best, if not the best, security measures in the world. But bad people are always one step ahead.

      Delete
    2. I forgot to address Blogger being free. Wordpress gets hacked all the time. Security is their biggest nemesis. I know, because I was on there for a year and got hacked. I even spoke to someone who works for a hosting company for WP, and they said they have their own blog on Blogger because Google has better security than WP.

      Delete
  27. I just checked Twitter. She was coming in through BlogTopSites under my URL and sending it out to her blog. I see that they have taken the page down so at least she's not now getting my traffic there. For now!

    ReplyDelete
  28. Brenda, OMG, I am so sorry this happened to you. I was at a blog conference listening to a session on keeping your blog safe. She said never put your email address on your blog. I took mine off and use Wufoo. But don't know if that is safe. I have a few bad sites in my stat. But I do not know how to get rid of them. Thank you very much for sharing! and keeping us knowledgeable about Blogger. Keep us updated.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm going to deal with my email right now.

      Delete
  29. Kathy, how does that work? PLEASE tell us!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brenda, Wufoo is a third party online form website. They have a paid subscription or you can choose from their free version in which they give you 3 free forms. I use the contact form you have to create your form from their templates, add your information, they give you a code to embed on your blog. I have had people contact me via this form and it works very well. Let me know if you have any more questions.

      Delete
  30. I forgot to leave the website info. http://www.wufoo.com/

    ReplyDelete
  31. Wow, that is just horrendous and I am so sorry this happened. I am thankful I don't blog. It all sounds so confusing. I know you will get to the bottom of this and fast! You are once again helping so many others.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's confusing when ne'er-do-wells try to steal what isn't theirs.

      Delete
  32. I often go to my blogroll and delete blogs with no recent activity. Due diligence ALWAYS!! Cruel, evil people out there. Sorry this happened to you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And that's a great practice to get into. I do the same.

      Delete
  33. Thanks for the warnings Brenda. I am going to update my blog rolls right now. I have some that I have deleted but need to check them out again. Sorry for all the trouble you were having with your accounts. Hopefully all is good now!

    ReplyDelete
  34. That is awful, Brenda! I had no idea that could happen that easily. I came in through my blog roll and it came right here so I assume that is alright. xo Diana

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I cannot figure out how they take my URL and superimpose theirs within it. Just can't figure out how.

      Delete
  35. Brenda--
    This happened to me in 2013-- It's called SCRAPING... I had them use a similar URL and some how had my traffic diverted to their BOGUS SITE... the problem was at first it appeared to be my site...it was my posts. After a few minutes... tons of POP UPS would flash on the screen and it would open many tabs to nefarious websites--- it wasn't pretty!
    I wrote several posts about it here: http://corninmycoffee-pot.blogspot.com/2013/08/on-being-scraped-its-tail-waggin-dog.html
    ...and included links in the process of talking with Google. (you can delete the link if you want)
    Also--- one way to combat this is TRUNCATING POSTS!
    Thieves can't steal a post that is incomplete. It won't work on their programs.
    hope this helps.
    Hope you get it worked out. By the way-- I came here tonight via my blogroll. So you're ok on my end.
    Have a good night.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, this isn't the same thing. They weren't taking my posts. They were using my blog URL, Cozy Little House URL, to drive traffic from my site to theirs. Have NO idea how they did it.

      Delete
  36. I didn't know what this is called. Someone did that to my Home Talk account a few months ago, which reminds me to check it again. I complained to them, deleted my link to them, and it seemed to get fixed.

    That's terrible, because it involved your business! I read the poster above, and now I have to see what truncating is. xoxo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I sent you an email about truncating posts. If it is confusing, email me and I'll help you.

      Delete
  37. So sorry Brenda! How incredibly frustrating. Thank you for the warning. ~julie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's like watching any piece of property. You have to keep your eyes on it to make sure no one else is up to no good.

      Delete
  38. oh that is awful! Thankfully I've always landed HERE! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, one day a few weeks ago I was over at Aiken Home & Gardens, and I was on her blog roll with the other person's photo and snippet. And it went to the other person's blog under the guise of my blog URL.

      Delete
  39. Because I am blog illiterate, do I, as a reader only, have anything to be concerned about on my end? I just cannot believe what people can do! xoxoxo

    ReplyDelete
  40. I noticed a while ago that the picture above your blog name had changed. And when I clicked it it would take me to their site. So frustrating! Finally I figured out how to fix it. So upsetting when people invade our space. If they used all that energy for something useful just think how far they could go!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All I knew to tell others was to delete my blog URL and then put it in again. And hope she didn't manage to ruin it again. I don't know if she did this on multiple blog rolls at a time, or what. No telling when I'll figure all this out.

      Delete
    2. Thanks for telling me! I didn't realize she had taken over Bloglovin as well.

      Delete
  41. So sorry about this for you! I look at your blog on Bloglovin' and as of this morning there is still a blog listed on there called "cozy little house". It is in all small letters. I did not put it on my list of blogs. It just appeared there. I don't even click on it. I really need to update the list of blogs I have.

    Can you tell some ways that people who like your blog can best support it?

    ReplyDelete
  42. Oh, this angers me so badly, what is wrong with our world. Is there anything that can truly be done?
    I haven't had any trouble connecting to you, Brenda.
    Why do some people get redirected and others do not??

    ReplyDelete
  43. This makes me so angry, to read that someone else benefits from your hard work. It's maddening, and those people have no shame or ethics.

    Hope you get it straightened out and that this doesn't happen again! Another tip: Set up a Google alert for your own name and URL.

    Thanks for adding me to your blogroll! I don't have one anymore.

    ReplyDelete

I always enjoy reading your comments and having you join the conversation here at Cozy Little House. It is like having a gathering of friends sitting in my cozy apartment. Enjoying coffee and dessert, chatting and having a good time. I appreciate each and every one of you!

About Author

[name=] [img=Your Image Url Here] [description=Brenda has been writing since grade school. She attended journalism school where she majored in professional writing. She loves to decorate, garden, read and spend time with her Yorkies.] (facebook=https://www.facebook.com/brendampruitt) (twitter=https://twitter.com/cozylittlehouse) (instagram=Instagram Profile Url) (bloglovin=https://www.bloglovin.com/blogs/cozy-little-house-4048071) (pinterest=https://www.pinterest.com/brendak) (tumblr=Tumblr Profile Url)

Follow @georgialoustudios