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Need Help Website Extortion Former SEO Illegal Redirect...Is this Legal?? HELP

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by AvrilNYC, Nov 3, 2013.

  1. AvrilNYC

    AvrilNYC Newbie

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    I hired an individual (not a firm) to handle the SEO for my website, I am not SEO savvy. The guy was doing an ok job but would only get me ranked on 1 key word + after the recent Google Update my site disappeared he didn't even know this I had to call him and draw his attention to this, I pay him to do this he should be aware of the change he was not, so I decided to go with a dedicated marketing firm who will work on my account on a fulltime basis, no hard feelings he just wasn't a good fit for my business SEO is important as I am in a competitive business in the NYC area. I didn't owe the guy money and was very nice to him so I was shocked at what he did after I told him.

    Since informing him of this he bought a domain main almost identical to mine (just made it plural with "es" to end) AND he redirected my website to this bogus site, first by redirecting to a competitors site and now it is redirected to a placement page for go daddy asking someone to claim your website either way you cant get it MY website it redirects to the new plural form of mine. The new SEO has changed my host server, but it is still redirecting at this point its been 48 hours. Don't know if this matters but the new plural site he purchased, was purchased through godaddy and my new host is godaddy, can I contact godaddy about this?

    My question? Can he do this? Is this legal? and do I have any recourse to combat what he is doing? This is costing me hundred or thousands of dollars in lost leads and revenues (shut down my webmail too) I need help this is B.S.!
    HELP what can I do???:bsflag::confused::confused::confused::confused::confused::confused::confused:
     
  2. designsonline

    designsonline Power Member

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    Surely you have access to your own domain control panel?
    If so undo the changes, and point the domain back to your own site & then change your control panel password.

    If it was done with code on your site first change your FTP password then strip out the redirect code, & get your site working again, then ping it to get the search engines to update the SERPS.
     
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  3. designsonline

    designsonline Power Member

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    Look for a few lines of code added, test your web pages one at a time to see if they all point to the new site, if only the homepage, or only specific pages do then you are looking for hidden code on those pages that performs the redirect. If that is the case you can move the website as often as you like and it will never fix the problem, you need to remove the code he added to those pages...
     
  4. AvrilNYC

    AvrilNYC Newbie

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    I do have access to my domain, I am a novice and have no idea how to even do this. I am hoping my "new" seo marketing firm is doing all this for me they assure me they are working on it, I guess I have to trust they know what they doing, we changed host companies.

    I just want to know can this guy do this (legally)? the plural of my website that comes up in search results is all my copy and company info but when you click its a placement page which is actually redirected.
     
  5. AvrilNYC

    AvrilNYC Newbie

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    How do I find/look for code...when I type in my web address is just redirects? to godaddy placement holder page of the plural of my website...cant godaddy fix this? :question:
     
  6. Asif WILSON Khan

    Asif WILSON Khan Executive VIP Premium Member

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  7. AvrilNYC

    AvrilNYC Newbie

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    I went to yelp and right clicked my website link went to properties this is the info that came up is this what you mean? Is this the code. I cant post entire link here but it starts as seen below

    biz_redir
     
  8. FirstNotice

    FirstNotice Registered Member

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    AvrilNYC,

    Sorry to hear about your troubles. There are several ways he could have done this to you. Did you purchase your domain name from GoDaddy? Can you log into your old GoDaddy account or the account where you purchased the domain? chances are that he has done the redirect where the domain was purchased, if so your new host will never see the domain. If he has not done so already you need to Change your password at GoDaddy and your FTP password immediately. Then you need to check the nameservers and DNS records to see what if anything he has changed.

    Hope it helps...
     
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  9. 1337python

    1337python Regular Member

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    If you know where this guy lives give him some physical backlinks, because that's a really dick of a move to do. If you don't want to do it, you can always lawyer up, because if you had a contract with him and he broke any of the terms you can easily sue him.
     
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  10. designsonline

    designsonline Power Member

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    I'm talking about the source code / HTML files for your website.
    From what I've heard it sounds like he has added some malicious redirect code to your HTML or Php or what ever code your website uses.

    Of course it is illegal for him to do this, just as it is illegal for him to copy the text from your website and put it on his new site.

    But before you can file a DMCA to his website host & have his new site taken down you need to get your website back online to be able to show where the text came from.
     
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  11. designsonline

    designsonline Power Member

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    I have to say if your new SEO company were any good they would have already resolved this for you right away...
     
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  12. Enryu

    Enryu Junior Member

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    Fortunately, this is pretty easy to fix, but for a novice, it can obviously be pretty daunting.

    As others have touched on, the redirect is either occurring at your current webhost (i.e. within your website's code or your .htaccess file, which can both be accessed via your cPanel) or at your domain registrar (in which case he would have changed your domain's name servers).

    If you already have professionals looking into it, then it should be pretty trivial for them to determine and resolve the issue, so it may be better to wait to see what they have to say, as a novice mucking around with these kinds of things could cause even more trouble.

    If you really need to take action now, you can contact your domain registrar to verify what your name servers are, and they may even be able to tell you if they've been recently changed. Likewise, you can contact your webhost to see if they have backups of your site which they can restore. If you do take any action, make sure you notify your new marketing firm so that you are not interfering with their efforts.
     
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  13. AvrilNYC

    AvrilNYC Newbie

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    I wish I was that savvy python, but, I am not hence why I am in this situation. I hope my new company does what it needs to . I purchased my name/website through yahoo that was the original server, right then? or was it the hosting company verio I think where he created the website. My new SEO changed servers? to go daddy...hes bogus server is godaddy as well, wondering if that's an avenue I can pursue, contacting godaddy wth what this guy is doing.... I hope I don't sound dumb but I don't know this stuff, sorry.....
     
  14. designsonline

    designsonline Power Member

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    I've sent you a private message, take a look & get back to me, it should quick & easy to fix, but the longer you leave it the more damage will be done to your ranking in Google.

    Enryu makes a valid point, you will need to communicate with your marketing/SEO company what you are doing & what is going on... This will avoid you wiping out each others efforts.

    I'm popping out for a bit in a moment, so may not be able to reply for a while....
     
  15. DangerousDEN

    DangerousDEN Regular Member

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    PM me more details, i will help you.
     
  16. AvrilNYC

    AvrilNYC Newbie

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    Yes they are fully aware of what the "prior" guy is doing and working on it to correct. At this point I trust no one LOL, but this is a reputable company I'm told. I didn't have a contract as it was a side thing for him, but what he has done must be illegal?

    ENryu Thank you great advice yes there are working on it I haven't done anything just wondering if this can be fixed and we can remove this bogus redirect..and possible get rid of entirely the plural of mine?
    Still smh as to why this guy would do this, just complete shock I think its a power thing with the new SEO firm to say Hey look at me.....but only hurting me
     
  17. user001

    user001 Junior Member

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    Don't take offence to this but this must have been a poor/cheap SEO provider to take over your website like this. If the new SEO company have not sorted this yet you really need to get them moving on this. Like Designsonline has said the longer this is left you will be having more hassle with google getting your rankings back.
     
  18. DangerousDEN

    DangerousDEN Regular Member

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    It's service niche right?

    Easy to fix - just change ask you 'new' SEO guy to change the nameservers.

    100% Not legal. you can go after him if you have his information, proof of payments/ converstations(emails, etc) - qustion you should ask is it worth ur time? Just fix the thing and never deal with this cockroach again.
     
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  19. designsonline

    designsonline Power Member

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    If the SEO company have moved the website to a new host, then they have already changed the name servers, but that won't fix the problem if the actual code on the website is infected with a redirect script.

    I understand you not trusting anyone, it is a horrible thing to happen to anyone, & even worse if you don't know what to do about it.

    I've offered to tell you definitively what the exact problem is if you send the website address to me in a private message. Whatever you do don't post the information on the thread. It will just open you up to further problems.

    I've just recently sorted out a problem almost identical to this for a client.
     
  20. AvrilNYC

    AvrilNYC Newbie

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    Dangerous Den..no I don't want to take legal action just want him to remove what he did so I can get it fixed and move on.
    I think he did change my name server not sure, first thing new SEO did was change me to godaddy. thats the nameserver right? Google updated on 25th so my new company feels if we get this straightened asap or by Monday they changed server over to godaddy Friday but my page is still blank? They say I wont lose my rankings if we do this asap.