Use Google Alerts to Monitor your website to prevent spot hacking

Google have been really helping webmaster coming up with great way to help spot if your website has been hacked.
One great method is to use the Google Alerting system set to monitor your domain against specific keywords you do not want to be associated with. If your site starts becoming associating with unrelated queries that are popular with spammers, for example keywords related to pharmaceuticals, payday loans or fake replica goods then you need to be aware as soon as this happens.


You can set up a Google Alerts (https://www.google.com/alerts) very quickly.

An example alert [site:www.chameleonwebservices.co.uk (viagra|cialis|casino|loans)]

Google Alerts

This will check if the domain www.chameleonwebservices.co.uk appears for the keywords requested and then Google will notify the chosen email address in the alert if this search query become active.

Google have stated:-
Monitor the Web for interesting new content, Google Alerts are email updates of the latest relevant Google results (web, news, etc.) based on your queries.

Enter a search query you wish to monitor. You will see a preview of the type of results you’ll receive. Some handy uses of Google Alerts include:
•monitoring a developing news story
•keeping current on a competitor or industry
•getting the latest on a celebrity or event
•keeping tabs on your favorite sports teams

These updates can be used how you wish and monitoring for things do not want is just as important as monitoring for things you are interested in.

Fix Drop Down Menu behind YouTube Videos

We get asked a lot of times about Z index’s to fix drop down menus hiding behind a youtube video.

There is many different ways to fix this problem but it seems you are fighting against Internet Explorer each time you fix this in another browser.

To explain the problem, when you add the iframe to your code to call the YouTube video for example you will use:-

https://www.youtube.com/embed/InDMh5s0-q0

No in the browser no matter what you do you get a z-index greater then everything else which means that YouTube video will be overlayed on top of anything and this is why you bang your head against the wall fixing with CSS.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/InDMh5s0-q0?wmode=opaque

To overcome this issue you can tell the YouTube video how to behave adding the following code:-

<iframe class="youtube-player" type="text/html" 
width="640" height="360"
src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/InDMh5s0-q0?wmode=opaque" 
frameborder="0"></iframe>

This fix works and the drop down menu will appear over the YouTube video. But the problem is you have to remember to add this to each video you embed so here a fix you can add to the header of your website coding and it will automatically add the required fix so you can embed normally and let the coding do the hard work.

function addToQueryString(url, key, value) {
    var query = url.indexOf('?');
    var anchor = url.indexOf('#');
    if (query == url.length - 1) {
        // Strip any ? on the end of the URL
        url = url.substring(0, query);
        query = -1;
    }
    return (anchor > 0 ? url.substring(0, anchor) : url)
         + (query > 0 ? "&" + key + "=" + value : "?" + key + "=" + value)
         + (anchor > 0 ? url.substring(anchor) : "");
}

HTML <iframe> Tag

An iframe is used to embed another document into a website, this can be a youtube vide, 360 virtual tour or even another webpage.

The iframe is used in Internet Explorer, Mozilla, Opera, Chrome and Safari which means it can be used safely on your website.

The use of iframes can be done in many ways and there is no real right or wrong way to do this as the best way depends on the final output required. Also for example if you use WordPress you use plugins to enalbe short codes.

In HTML5 we have new attributes that we can use such as sandbox, seamless and srdoc which we will show you how to use later.

Basic iframe coding:-

<iframe src=”http://www.chameleonwebservices.co.uk”></iframe>

iFrame Attributes

AttributeValueDescription
Alignleft, right, top, middle, bottomNote this is no longer supported in HTML5.
Specifies hoe the alignment of an <iframe> will be plcaed on the page.
frameborder10Note this is not supported in HTML5. This specifies whether or not to display a border around the
<iframe>
heightnumber pixelsSpecifies the physical height of an <iframe>
longdescURLNote this is not supported in HTML5. Specifies that the page contains a long description of the
content of an <iframe>
marginheightpixelsNote this is not supported in HTML5. Specifies the top and bottom margins for the content of an <iframe>
marginwidthnumber pixelsNote this is not supported in HTML5. Specifies the left and right margins to be used around the <iframe>
namenameSpecifies the name of the <iframe>
sandbox“”, allow-forms, allow-same-origin, allow-scripts, allow-top-navigationAllows you to set extra restrictions for the content in the <iframe>
scrollingyes, no, autoNote this is not supported in HTML5. Specifies whether to display scrollbars in an <iframe>
seamlessseamlessSpecifies that the <iframe> should merge in with the containing document. You do this using <iframe seamless>. This is only supported by Chrome and Safari.
srcURLSpecifies the URL of the document to embed in the <iframe>
srcdocHTML_codeSpecifies the HTML content of the page to show in the <iframe>
widthnumber of pixelsSpecifies the width of the <iframe>

What is this WordPress Message from the Hosting Companies

There are many shared hosting companies that are pulling there hair out due to increase traffic to WordPress websites.

A well trusted company such as HEART INTERNET for example have put this message up:-

Current System Status

Access to WordPress Admin

Fri, 12 Apr 2013 13:07:24 +0100

We are seeing increased traffic to a large number of WordPress sites on our shared hosting platform. The attack is not unique to ourselves and is affecting many hosting providers worldwide. Many providers have blocked access to the Admin area of WordPress altogether, however we do not want to take this approach as it will also prevent you from administering your own website. Instead, when accessing your WordPress Admin Area you may find that you are prompted for a username and password not previously required. The credentials for this login are:

Username: ***********
Password: ***********

As soon as normal service is resumed, this prompt will be removed and the above credentials will no longer be required. We appreciate your patience during this time, and we will update this page once this has been resolved.


Worldwide Brute-Force Attack

Go Daddy have put this message up:-

Web Hosting April 11, 2013 at 11:06 AM

We continue to mitigate the Internet-wide attack, but customers should be able to access their admin pages. If you need to strengthen your password, we recommend referring to x.co/strongpass for guidance. Thanks for your patience.We are aware of an ongoing, industry-wide attack attempting to gain access to customers’ websites. While we mitigate it, you might not have access to admin pages for Joomla! or WordPress. Your site, however, will remain online. To keep your site and your information secure, we recommend changing your password when you regain access to your site.

What Go Daddy Are Doing

Our Security team continues to identify these attacks, down to the IP address, and block anything that looks malicious. Additionally, we’ve installed new features on every single one of our thousands of servers to block these bad actors more quickly.

What You Can Do

Regardless of whether you use WordPress or Joomla! for your website, this worldwide attack could affect you. That’s why it’s imperative that you use strong passwords.

We all know that “password123” is not a wise idea for a password, but neither are dictionary words, your dog’s name, or the name of the street you live on. Attackers have libraries of the most common passwords, and use those lists in attacks like we’re experiencing.

The tougher and more sophisticated your password, the more difficult it will be for an attacker to gain access

Windows 8 – How To

We have new IT equipment and with this comes Windows 8. Great you might think as a movement forward by Microsoft from the Windows 7 that we had just got to like.

Windows 8 is great looking but the problem we see is that it is not now a desktop experience it is a mix of the modern UI and part desktop with items that we used before removed.

The problem comes now when you try and use simple tasks like to “shut down windows 8” or to “close application on windows 8”.

These simple tasks are hidden from us and we find this very strange.

How To Shut Down Windows 8

You would imagine that to shut down your computer you simply click on the start menu and SHUT DOWN….after all this is Windows. No the start menu is no longer available.

  • To shut down Windows 8 you have to move your move pointer to the bottom right hand corner and then you get a pop up.
  • Now click Settings, then click Power options.
  • Now click Power, then click Shut down.

Sound simple, we looked everywhere for this and have spoke to people who have even gone to YouTube to search how to shut down PC running Windows 8.

How To Close Aplications On Windows 8

Within Windows 8 you can still close application using ALT and F4 and to see what programs are running we can still use CTRL, ALT ,DEL but this does take us to the desktop screen in order to use the feature.

Before we had “X” somewhere that meant we could close the program or function, this has now gone.

In Windows 8 if you take the mouse pointer into the top left hand corner of the screen you can switch between actively running applications.

HOT Keys in Windows 8

  • Press the Windows KEY to enter the tiled Start screen.
  • Press the Windows KEY + M to minimise everything that’s showing on the desktop.
  • Press the Windows KEY + E opens Explorer to folders on yor computer.
  • When on the start screen you can press the Windows KEY + D to get to the desktop.
  • Press the Windows KEY + Tab to open a list of currently running programs.
  • Press the Windows KEY + Print Screen to take a screenshot.
  • Press the Windows KEY + R to run commands.