Malware or Harmful Content Warning in Search Console: How to Fix?

If Google detects that your site contains harmful content or malware, it sends you a message in Search Console (previously known as Google Webmaster Tools). The term “malware” refers to all kind of software, scripts or content that is designed to harm your computer or network. It may be an unwanted software, virus, worm, spyware, or a Trojan horse.

If the hacker, intruder or an unauthorized personnel inserted malicious content into your site, Google would identify your site as infected and will display a warning message while opening on the chrome to protect other users.

Deceptive site ahead - chrome warning

Recently, I’ve faced the similar issues with one of my websites. If your site is flagged as containing malware or malicious/harmful content and received a similar message given below, then you are at right place!

Google has detected harmful content on some of your site’s pages. We recommend that you remove it as soon as possible. Until then browsers such as Google Chrome will display a warning when users visit or download certain files from your site.

Here is the screenshot:
critical malware detected

How to remove that warning?

Here are three basic steps that you can use to fix this problem and remove this warning label from your website:

Step 1: Collect Sample Links and Analyze

Download all the URLs identified as containing harmful content or malicious code. Extract those URLs and analyze – Is there any unwanted software download pop-up or social engineering content?

harmful content message

Step 2: Clean and Secure Your Site

  • Scan your website hosted content with an anti-virus software. And make sure your site does not serve any virus, binary malware or other unwanted software downloads.
  • Check website or page source code for any unauthorized changes.
  • Remove that malicious content or code from the website.
  • Update your plugins, blogging platform, CMS such as WordPress to the latest versions and change all your passwords as well.

Recommended Reading: “This Site May Harm Your Computer” – How To Fix Your Site and Remove The Malware?

Step 3: Request a Review

Once you are confident that your site is secure and clean, you can request a review. Follow these steps:

  • Go to Search Console -> Security Issue
  • Check I’ve fixed Issues
  • Click on Request a Review
  • Tell Google what you’ve done to fix this Issue.

Example message for Google review in webmaster

Here is the transcript of review request message:

Dear Google,

Here are the changes we made to clean and secure the site:

– Scanned the code and content hosted on the site with anti-virus
– Removed 3rd party code and content embedded on the site

Kindly review the sites as soon as possible!

Thanks,
Webmaster
yoursite.com

Once you request the review, Google scanners will scan your website for the harmful/malicious content or unwanted software. This can take up to 72 hours. If none is found, Google will remove the warning from your site and will send you the confirmation for the same in Google Search Console.

review successful in google webmaster

Note: Recently, Google has expanded its Safe Browsing protection to protect users from deceptive download buttons, embedded content and other “social engineering” advertisement.

What are your thoughts on this? Have you ever experienced this issue? How you fixed this issue? Please share in comments.

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9 Comments

  1. kashiblog@gmail.com'

    Hi Admin,
    I am trying to find a correct answer for my site then i found your post. it is very helpful for me. i bookmark itfor next help,
    Keep it Admin

     
  2. ajayshsjyus@gmail.com'

    Excellent article! I was looking for the solution to the same problem. This is quite helpful, especially the Google webmaster review message transcript. Thanks a lot!

     
  3. mdmasudjabedbd@gmail.com'

    Malicoius software now harmful for pc. We should be alert. Thanks

     
  4. manusstar@yahoo.com'

    great bro….God Bless You…It was of great help for me to rectify issues from one of my websites. Thanks…

     
  5. vivekkathiriya@gmail.com'
    Vivek Kathiriya

    Hi,

    As you mention, Google will give download option for the specific Urls, but in my case I cant see any specific urls.

    So how should I remove malware from my site.

     
    • Hi Vivek, Are you getting the same warning as I shown in the post? Because It’s just one case of malware content, there are many other types of such warning. It seems that you have a different case.

       
  6. truptinale1@gmail.com'

    Really, it’s an awesome solution.

     
  7. gachemamuniu@gmail.com'

    This email “Social Engineering Content Detected” is common an doesn’t explain anything. Most users need to find out the exact problem on their own. But the problem us usually ads from other websites and especially affiliate companies. Read my encounter with this email and how I got the issue resolved in 24 hours.
    http://www.webproeducation.org/how-to/fix-social-engineering-content-detected/

     
  8. vikar.empires@yahoo.com'

    I have the same warning but no Sample URLs, how to fix this?
    Thanks

     

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