Stray Leftover Hacked WordPress Database Entry: rzf.php

I never use my uploads directory or WordPress’s built in media management here on Smackdown, instead preferring to upload and manually insert the html for images myself in my posts (I know, I am weird that way), but my friend Donna has when she has guest blogged here in the past. I therefore knew that the uploads directory existed and had a few images in there, but never really had any reason to look at them. It was totally by accident that I clicked on the Media link in the admin section this morning. I am glad that I did, however, since otherwise I never would have known that I had missed a bit of leftover data from one of the times that I had been hacked last year, a reference to a file named rzf.php.

I use an early warning hacking detection system that Donna came up with last year with and I helped refine, MonitorHackdFiles, that alerts me whenever there are any files modified or added on my blog. This script has been indispensable in helping me to clean up damage from hacks before either my rankings were harmed or an infection spread to my readers. However, based on the folder structure

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Jason Calacanis: Screw You Google, Now I’ll Sell Links Too

By now Google has to be getting more than a little embarrassed about the behavior of Mr. Jason Calacanis and his site, Mahalo.com. Aaron Wall did a very well written piece explaining how Mahalo Makes Black Look White and the spammy techniques they were employing. This isn’t the first time Aaron has blogged about Mahalo either, and talked about exactly how this makes Google look bad. For those who might not know, I have also been blogging about this recently.

While Google will ban smaller websites from their search results or from AdSense on a whim, usually it takes heavier coverage

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Jason Calacanis’ Backup Plan For Replacing Content: Steal It From Wikipedia

/sigh

Ok Jason, we get it, you’re desperate. But stealing content from Wikipedia in order to replace what you deleted? Come on!

I am flipping through Mahalo.com today, just seeing if

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Dear Jason Calacanis: This Isn’t An “Absurd Microscope”

Jason Calacanis replied to my post from yesterday. In it he discusses how he is indeed deleting many of the spammy pages that I had pointed out. Some, like the duplicate content doorway pages, he continues to defend. Either way, progress is being made.

However, he still kinda kills it by tossing in at the end about how this whole scrutiny on his site is “absurd”, and anyone who calls him on it is being “vicious”:

Read moreDear Jason Calacanis: This Isn’t An “Absurd Microscope”

Mahalo.com: Meet the New Spam, Worse than the Old Spam

Last week, after Matt Cutts gave Jason Calacanis a warning about Mahalo.com’s spammier pages (and probably a few stern looks as well), Jason changed a few items. He had them rename their spambot from “searchclick” to “stub”, thinking a less obvious name would throw off anyone looking into the spam situation. Very briefly they added a noindex meta tag to the content-less pages (a change that they then undid after just one day, of course). Probably the biggest change that they made, however, is that they decided to actually turn off (for now anyways) the bot that was creating all of those pages that were nothing more than scraped content.

What then, you may ask yourself, is Jason going to replace all of these pages with, exactly? I know that’s what I was asking. As I pointed out

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Jason Calacanis Makes Matt Cutts A Liar

Last week at SMX West, during the Ask The Search Engines panel, moderator Danny Sullivan asked Matt Cutts why he didn’t ban Mahalo.com for spamming Google. Matt stated that he had talked to Jason Calacanis, Mahalo.com CEO, about the issues, and warned him that Google might “take action” if Jason didn’t make some changes to the spammy side of Mahalo. Matt also made the following statement, in reference to Aaron Wall’s post on the subject:

All the pages Aaron pointed out now have noindex on them. – Matt Cutts

Matt was referring to all of the autogenerated pages that both Aaron I blogged about in our posts, the ones with

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Don’t Think “If” You Will Get Hacked, Or Even “When” – Think In Terms Of “How Often”

The following “guest post” was a comment left on “How To Completely Clean Your WordPress Installation” by a gentleman named Daniel J. Dick. He makes some excellent points, and due to it’s length I decided to feature the comment in it’s own post, rather than approve it in place. Enjoy.

I think Nick sums up how most of us feel about malicious hackers, script kiddies, and spambots that wreck other people’s stuff.

My apologies to everyone that reads this that are searching out how to fix your blog. It is obviously meant for the little, no good, no life having, soulless human maggot out there that creates viruses, malicious scripts and hacks other peoples stuff. YOU SUCK BIG MOOSE C#&@!!

– Nick

Most of my sites

Read moreDon’t Think “If” You Will Get Hacked, Or Even “When” – Think In Terms Of “How Often”

Scientology Suspended For “Strange Activity”

I don’t know about the rest of you, but for some reason I find this oddly poetic. 🙂

 

Scientology suspended for strange activity? Who would have thought! :)
(Click to enlarge.)

 

For those who can’t read it, it’s from http://twitter.com/scientology, and states:

Sorry, the profile you were trying to view has been suspended due to strange activity.

Yeah, like that’s a surprise!

Apparently Jason Calacanis Knows He’s Spamming – He Just Thinks It’s No Big Deal

Last month Jason Calacanis wrote a rather sarcastic post aimed at Aaron Wall, which I am assuming was written in response to Aaron’s post, “Black Hat SEO Case Study: How Mahalo Makes Black Look White!“. In it Aaron discusses how sites that are composed largely of nothing more than auto-generated pages wrapped in adsense can get accepted and even gain authority in Google if they have enough financing and press. In Jason’s rebuttal to this was a claim about rankings that Mahalo had “earned” (and I use the term loosely) for “VIDEO GAME walkthrough”. I originally misinterpreted what he was trying to say, and thought that he meant rankings for that exact phrase. I commented how that wasn’t exactly a great accomplishment before realizing that what he actually meant was rankings for [{insert video game name} walkthrough], and that Mahalo has a couple top 10 rankings for that genre of search phrases.

Jason sent me an email to correct me on what he was talking about. We replied to each other back and forth a couple times, and a few very interesting things were revealed in that conversation:

Read moreApparently Jason Calacanis Knows He’s Spamming – He Just Thinks It’s No Big Deal