I battle continuously hackers seeking to embed hidden backlinks in my website code to game and gain Google search engine visibility for various e-commerce websites.
Since I launched this website in 2007, these invasive parasites have cost me countless hours engaged in malware removal, cleanups and Google restitutions. They’ve forced me to pay a subscription to a malware monitoring and security service — like a tax for making this website and my writings public to all.
Google’s SEO webspam team doesn’t like these characters, either. And that’s becoming more obvious as companies reach out to me, pleading for me to remove the fraudulent backlinks they installed, for fear of penalties from Google. (Apparently, I still have a few fraudulent backlinks, for which I’ll need to speak with my website security service, Sucuri.)
Here is the latest request from a company to remove malicious backlinks:
Hello Site Owner!
My name is (Andrew) and I am reaching out to you as a representative from *********.com. We are all at the mercy of Google, unfortunately.
As Google updates their algorithm we are forced to adapt and adhere to their quality guidelines. We understand the stress this puts on webmasters, and we apologize for that inconvenience, but for our own best interest we cannot ignore Google.
We have recently completed a full backlink profile audit on our site’s and have found links that were once valuable, may now have a negative effect on our internet presence. We found the following backlinks from your site:
Please remove the above links as well as all other links ********* .com
These links were created by a former SEO company with whom we no longer have a relationship with. We were not aware of this link building scheme and apologize for their actions.
We want to highlight the fact that this is not only an attempt to improve our website, but this will have a positive effect on your site as well.
We also do not participate in paying to have links removed, as advised from Google’s webspam team. Feel free to view Google’s advice on paying for link removals here.
Again, we are deeply sorry for this inconvenience. Please let us know if you are willing to help us help you and remove the links listed above.
We greatly appreciate your time and attention to this matter. Thank you very much!
The author of this email, whose email domain is from the e-commerce site in question, claims to be an official representative of that company. The author fails to provide a full name or any substantial contact information, though claims to share in the unfortunate “mercy of Google.” Further, the author of the email assigns full blame on the malicious backlink activity and my “inconvenience” to a “former SEO company” with whom they have no further relationship. I’ve been sent this exact letter multiple times, which indicates it is a form letter that has been sent not only to me, but to many other websites.
When malice prompts forgiveness, it means that Google’s webspam team is doing its job.
Photo: Nikita Kravchuk