All our sites were offline. Here’s why…
Well you may be surprised but your loveable site owner, Max Miller, has a few highly trafficked web sites. But it was a zombie site that done us in. When we were testing for a format, style, etc for a newspaper type site which we eventually launched as Independent.im, we built a few test sites. Unfortunately we forgot about two of the old test sites that were just hanging around in the dark recesses of the internet.
We may have forgotten about them, but hackers hadn’t. Because we left them alone, these WordPress based sites were susceptible to hacking. And that’s exactly what happened. In this case, to use as a massive email server. Cleaning them up took quite some time. So much time in fact that we decided to simply delete them. But, even that took a long time as there were so many files. Once we had identified the problem, it literally took over 36 hours to delete all the rouge files.
So lesson learned. If you have high trafficked sites, do not leave old ones lying around on the same servers. Secondly, use a service like Sucri.net. This is the second time these guys have bailed me out. Thanks guys.