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Applying the Principals of the The Million Dollar Club

by Shawanda Greene

On Friday, August 14th, I found out my web site was blacklisted on Google, Firefox, Safari, and Chrome. This essentially means YouHaveMoreThanYouThink.org will not show up in Google’s search results. People who attempt to visit my blog using the aforementioned web browsers (Internet Explorer is still my friend) will receive a nasty, flaming, spinning picture of a skull and crossbones with giant hornets swarming about  it. The tag line beneath the picture reads “Proceeding to This Site Results in Certain Death!”

Well, maybe that’s not an accurate description of what the warning page looks like, but it’s still pretty gnarly. Look at it!

OMG!!!

Imagine the devastation felt when I discovered this. On Friday, I planned on writing about a recent experience with a Craigslist crook. Followed up by my second weekly roundup on Saturday. I’d been shut down by a hacker. *Growl* I was so mad and frustrated that at one point I remarked, “hackers should be subjected to the death penalty.” I don’t really believe that, but it goes to show how enraged I’d become.

I won’t bore you with the details of how I set about resolving the issue. The process was long and tedious. Plus, I fear I’m not yet emotionally stable enough to relive a detailed play by play of the whole ordeal. Forgive me. It’s just too soon.

Although Google no longer lists my site as suspicious, they’re still warning would-be visitors that my site is unsafe. Who knows how long it takes to be de-blacklisted.

So you’re wondering how this all relates to applying the principals of the Million Dollar Club. (Keep in mind that although the Million Dollar Club was founded by J. Money, the principals are self-defined.)  Refer to Million Dollar principal number 3: “Press forward even when things don’t go as planned.”

You see, I got a lot of Twitter action on Friday. Personal finance bloggers far more popular than me were tweeting links to my blog, encouraging their followers to check me out. I received a host of new followers and a decent bit of traffic from Twitter. The day was shaping up to be quite glorious. It felt like a punch in the face when my site got shut down.

What if new and old visitors think I’m a sneaky scoundrel, no better than the Craigman who tried to rip me off? *Sigh*

But I must press forward. If I’m to achieve world domination financial freedom, I can’t let hackers or haters stop me. If Google, Firefox, and them insist on labeling my web site as dangerous, then I’m prepared to transfer my posts, pictures, and comments to blogger. Perhaps it won’t come to that. However, if it does, I hope you’ll follow me.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

hustler August 17, 2009 at 4:18 AM

whoa. That really sucks. But on the bright side, you know you’ve made it when you have haters who would do that! (And I’m glad you “pressed forward”!)

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Carla August 17, 2009 at 1:20 PM

I am so sorry to hear that. I think I got that same message from your site a few days ago but I think it was something I was doing.

I had that happen to my blog and website but thankfully I caught it in time before I got blacklisted. Ever since I switched from a Mac to a PC, I have had nothing but problems. Two business credit cards and one business debit card got hacked. From the look of the charges, it looks like my information was obtained electronically. If you find out anything about how to protect your computer and websites aside from the Norton and Avast (which I’m already doing), please let me know!

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Ashley August 17, 2009 at 3:10 PM

What a horrible situation! I’m sure you will press on and a solution will be reached. Your post will be just as exciting to read no matter what url we have to visit to see them!

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Shawanda Greene August 18, 2009 at 8:53 PM

@Hustler – Thanks. My blog traffic isn’t even close to where I’d like it to be, but at least I know I have to be extra cautious with security going forward. I figure the risk of getting hacked increases the more popular your web site becomes.

@Carla – I should’ve taken notice when the site kept going down. I’d wake up in the morning and notice a weird message about there being a problem on line 1034 of some default widget when I tried to access my web site. I can’t remember the details, but I should’ve saw that as a sign that something was amiss. Looking back on it, I could’ve addressed the problem before getting blacklisted.

I’ll let you know if I come across any other software programs that are effective at thwarting an attack.

@Ashley – Thanks for the kind and encouraging words. My website came back up a couple hours after I wrote this blog post. I still feel like I need to do more research to prevent this from happening again.

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Bakari August 25, 2009 at 1:41 AM

That sucks! It’s good to see that it doesn’t affect your resolve though.

Have you ever thought about approaching a magazine, etc., about featuring your work? That would be a way to avoid that sort of event as well.

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