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Google blacklist

What is Google blacklist?

The Google blacklist (also known as ‘block list’) is a database that includes websites and IP addresses which Goggle, other search engines and antivirus software providers have marked as unsafe for use. In most cases, websites get flagged[1] if they are caught on distributing malware or publishing illegal content.

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How does Google blacklist work

When Google finds out any security risks while crawling a website, it will add the suspicious site to its blacklist. Users will see the “This site may harm your computer” message in Google SERP, while the website owner will receive a notification in Google Search Console. 

This site may harm your computer message in Google SERP

On average, Google blacklists around 10K pages daily. The website owner may not be responsible for the malware if the website was hacked for instance, but it will not prevent blacklisting, that’s why it’s critical to make sure your website doesn’t violate important guidelines and rules.

How to check if you’re on Google blacklist

There are several ways to check whether a website’s been blacklisted. First off, you can make a simple search on Google using the ‘site’ operator - site:yourdomain.com. If you see the warning message in the SERP results, then your website must be on the blacklist.

Secondly, if your site’s been marked as suspicious, you will definitely receive the related notification in Google Search Console

Google also offers several tools to check domains for specific issues, such as copyright infringement. This tool works in accordance Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and provides a simple mechanism for copyright owners from countries/regions around the world.

How to avoid getting on Google blacklist

There are ways to protect your website from getting on the blacklist. One of the important steps you can take is to make sure all your website forms are well protected, especially login forms. The easiest way to protect login forms is by using CAPTCHA and two-factor authorization.

Another way to protect your website is by using strong passwords, since weak passwords can be easily cracked by malicious bots. Make sure that all people who have access to your website’s admin panel, use strong passwords and store them in secured password managers.

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It’s also important to keep your website updated - all plugins, themes and modules on your website should be updated to the latest version. If you use a content management system such as WordPress, Joomla, Magento, etc., make sure that your website’s running on the latest version of your CMS. Use dedicated plugins, such as the AIOSEO plugin for WordPress, to diagnose any possible issues.

Finally, pay close attention to user generated content on your website. If you allow uploading files, you should limit certain filetypes, such as .exe or .js. 

How to remove your website from Google blacklist

If the worst happened and your website has been added to Google blacklist, the first thing you should do is find out the reason behind it. To do this, login into your Google Search Console account, and go to Security and Manual Actions >> Security issues. The main reasons include malware, viruses, SEO spam and injected SQL code.

After you discover the exact reason, you will know what you should focus on to fix it. If the main issue is SEO spam, you will be given instructions from Google with a list of pages and links. 

If your website’s been infected with malware, you will need to run a thorough check of all the changes[2] across all website’s pages - remove new suspicious user accounts, disable outdated plugins and themes, clean infected database tables. In short, you will need to remove all suspicious unauthorized changes made to your website. 

After you’ve cleaned your website, you can go back to the Search Console, click on “I have fixed this issues” link and request a review. 

If Google decides that you’ve fixed all the problems, your website will be removed from the blacklist, and it will be reindexed in SERPs.