Why do hackers hack?…..and a BOOK and WEBSITE update!

 

Before anything else……..if you noticed, my site was a black screen for most of yesterday.

 

Screen Shot 2014-03-12 at 9.33.11 AM

 

 

 

Here’s why. 

 

Someone from Kosovo hacked into my site and froze up my entire site.  If you tried clicking on anything, a facebook login box would pop up (or it would direct you to a whole new facebook login page).  I’m assuming he/she would then steal the facebook info and use it for his/her own ugly reasons.

 

Here’s what the little box looked like…..did you see it?

 

Screen Shot 2014-03-11 at 9.37.05 AM

 

 

 

SO LISTEN……if you visited my site early yesterday morning and tried clicking on something and then a facebook login page popped up, hopefully you clicked away.  If you did log in (and were kinda confused but didn’t think much of it, because you know I’m not some crazy person and figured I was linking my site to facebook or something)…….then CHANGE YOUR FACEBOOK PASSWORDS right away!  And I’m so sorry if some of you did get caught up in the hacker’s game….that’s what was making me the most sick.  I’m not really sure what info they could gather though by hacking into facebook (I don’t have credit cards or addresses or anything very personal in facebook….do you?) but I have heard of strange stories of people hacking in and sending messages to your friends, posing as yourself, and asking friends for money, etc.  So…..if you see a message from me, asking for a wire transfer because I’m stranded in Paris, ignore it.  I’m not.  Grrrr.  However, once they hacked in, I changed passwords, put a double security on it and am actually putting some software on my computer that continually generates new passwords that are a lot more secure.

 

BUT, this hacker found an old email address, found the info he needed and placed the facebook screen on my site.  The moment I noticed, I shut the site down and put it in maintenance mode until I figured what in the world was going on.  (Because at first, I hadn’t connected all the dots yet.)  So, very few of you should have actually seen that login page.  I spent most of the day researching and reset the site, removed the malware, had my host run extra scans, and polished her up all pretty again.

 

Whew…….and yes, I change my passwords pretty often but I guess I’m not adding enough crazy symbols ($$%%@@??) and lower/upper cases and mumbled up mess.  I guess anything that is semi-recognizable isn’t good enough.  Uggggh.

 

However, in all the 4 years (or has it been 5??) that I’ve been blogging, I’ve never had someone hack in.  So this kinda shocked me (and gave me a little anxiety……and you know me, totally an emotional eater, so that bag of cadbury mini eggs?  Gone.)   But…..lesson learned.  Better safe then sorry, my friends!  So……go change those passwords to all of your online accounts.  And throw some funky symbols in there. 

 

And to the hacker in Kosovo (I know it was Kosovo because every time they attempted to change a password, add a user, etc…..the attempt was logged in my accounts)……….I’m kind of surprised you chose a craft site.  But hey, maybe you really wanted to know the inside scoop of making baby leggings!

 

Whew……on today’s agenda?  A hot bath. :)

. . . . .

 

 

 

In other news….and a lot more cheery and exciting……my BOOK!

 

I wish, I wish, I WISH that I could share a little more about it.  But I joked on Instagram that my editor Kristen said she’d take my unborn child if I leaked any info about it.  I can’t stand keeping a secret, so this is killing me!

 

But do you know how close the book is to being done?  Reeeeeeeeeally close!

 

In fact, I received the printed manuscript a few days ago and for the first time saw the layout with all the pictures, the chapters, the intro……all of it!  (Except for a few templates in the back.)  I have been flipping through pages and editing this sucker for the 87th time.  However, this time is different.  This time I get to hold her in more of her book form.  And I couldn’t be more thrilled about how it’s looking.  That little designer of mine (okay, she’s not mine…..she works for Running Press/Perseus, my publisher) is working her magic and it’s as if she took a peek in my brain and figured out exactly how I wanted it.  Oh, I want to hug her!  And her name is Ashley too……so I like her extra!

 

But the last few days I’ve been up to my eyeballs in finishing up last bits of this book.  A few photo re-takes, several re-edits, and some re-arranging.  But I’m almost completely done with my part.  (However, I’m learning that when you write a book, you think your part is about done, and then hey…..why not throw one more edit in there?!!  Ha.

Screen Shot 2014-03-12 at 10.08.30 AM

(Picture from my Instagram account)

 

 

Anyway, in the coming months……..I’ll finally be able to share more about this project.  And share more pictures.  And actually tell you what the book is about.  (You might be a little surprised…….oooooh, I can’t wait! :)

. . . . .

 

 

 One more thing.  I’m realizing that I must really hate sitting idle.  Because wow, there’s a lot going on right now.  And it’s as if my body is already “nesting” and getting all of the big things that I have wanted to do done now, because this summer will change things a bit.  Okay….so be it.  Because I can’t wait to sit and love on the little guy this summer.

 

But…….I’m changing a few things on this site.  Nothing crazy.  It will look mostly the same.  But I’m adding something kinda fun to the site and am working with a designer to take care of all that coding and smarty-pants stuff.  So, you may see the site go into maintenance mode (but I don’t want anyone to worry that the Kosovo hacker is back….ack!).  But when it’s done, you’ll see a few new things around here…….but still the old stuff too.  Don’t worry.

 

More on that in the next few days. 

Okay……now I’m serious about that hot bath. 

 

Talk to you soon!

-Ashley

 

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Comments

36 Responses to “Why do hackers hack?…..and a BOOK and WEBSITE update!”
  1. 1
    Amy says:

    Just in case it’s helpful, the pop up about signing up for the mailing list is really difficult on iphone. It slowly creeps across and you can’t enlarge it without it jumping around and out of the way, at least for me! I have a 4s and it has persisted through the last few months with updates. It’s hard to get that tiny X without enlarging!

    • 1.1
      Anonymous says:

      I have the same problem.

    • 1.2
      Ashley says:

      Oh gee…..it shouldn’t do that every single time. I’m so sorry! It’s set to only pop up like every 60 days. I guess if your phone clears your browser every single time, maybe that’s the issue. But I pull up my site on my iphone all the time and it doesn’t pop up the box……hmmmmmm, that’s strange. I’ll have to look into it though because the last thing I want, is for the subscription sign-up to be bothersome. Thanks for letting me know! :)

      -Ashley

      • 1.2.1
        Anonymous says:

        That probably means I notice it and get frustrated every sixty days, and totally forget about it the other times! I use two iPads and my phone, so I’m also probably getting triple exposure that way and making it worse in my head!

        • 1.2.1.1
          Ashley says:

          Oh gosh, haha, I’m so sorry! I think I will still try and tweak it though. And if you need someone to take over one of those ipads, I have a husband who thinks he needs one all for himself! ;)

    • 1.3
      Maria Wicks says:

      I have the same problem with that pop up. I get it every time I open up the site, and then not only that, but every time I click on another page on your site, every time any page loads, that pop up comes up. So if I was to use your square circle tshirt dress tutorial, and then also open up the tshirt dress tutorial and the square circle skirt tutorial for reference, I would have that pop up on all those pages, plus the homepage, and also the tutorial list page that I would use to get to those other tutorials. But I just deal with is because I just love your blog, lol.

      But as far as the hacker goes. I didn’t know what in the world was going on. I was wanting to look at some of your older posts from a few years ago, and every time I clicked on anything, that FB pop up came up. I tried and tried to get it to work. I tried on my computer, on 2 different browsers. I thought it was my computer, so I tried on my tablet, then on my iPhone, and still the same thing, so I just figured it was my network or something. So finally after 2 hours of trying, and going through a whole troubleshooting thing on my computer, and then also with the network settings, I finally gave up. Glad to know you got it fixed though, and hopefully there was no serious damage.

      Anxious to hear more about your new book!!!

      (P.S. I know you are super busy, but I was wondering if you have the time sometime, can you please read my comment on Chloe’s Birthday post from a few days ago. I had asked you a question about something that I have so desperately been trying to find the answer to for some time now, with no luck. Thanks!)

  2. 2
    Laura says:

    Congrats on being famous enough to have some care to hack you! See: silver lining. BAM!

    • 2.1
      Ashley says:

      Haha…..that made me laugh! Whoever it was probably just figured I was some clueless crafting mom and maybe wouldn’t notice?? Okay, so my previous security measures weren’t Ft Knoxx……but ooooh, they are now! :)

  3. 3
    sarah says:

    Ahhh so sorry that happened to you :( that’s terrible. glad all is fixed!!! love your site as always

  4. 4
    Robin says:

    Booooo! We HATE hackers. Was that a little harsh? I hope they don’t try to track this comment and take me down. Meh. Bring it, hacker-do-no-gooder. Better me, than my favorite site.

  5. 5
    Jennifer H. says:

    … ahh.. I was wondering what was happening yesterday. So sorry about the hacker! boo! But, glad that you were able to figure it out.

  6. 6
    Jennifer H. says:

    Oh, and so excited to hear about the book coming out soon…!

  7. 7
    Amanda says:

    Yep, been dealing with that in past few weeks myself. I now have 3 security back up systems on my blog. One of them even lets me know when I login. So far so good, but so annoying.

    • 7.1
      Ashley says:

      No way!! I’m so sorry you’ve been dealing with this too. It’s such a mess! Ha….and yeah, probably annoying but the flip-side puts my stomach in knots.

      • 7.1.1
        Amanda says:

        I would rather have had your blank screen. My little hackers were “adding” to my posts and I couldn’t see it I guess because I use a Mac. A reader sent me a screen shot of what they added – apparently I was sharing the benefits of helpful male drugs! Yes, it is definitely worth the hassle of the extra security!

        • 7.1.1.1
          Ashley says:

          Oh my word……really?!?! I put the black screen in place myself (that’s all I could figure out in a hurry). I use a Mac too, so I wouldn’t have seen anything either but I made my sisters look up my site from different states and all they noticed was the facebook pop-up screen. My gosh, I’m sure you were mortified though! And what a pain, I’m guessing you had to comb through everything? Or did you just reset to before the hacking began? Agggh…..hacking is too advanced for me, I’m glad my host took care of everything. And amen to the added security! Good luck keeping the ugly off your site!! :)

  8. 8
    Elizabeth says:

    Very excited about your book. Yeah! I thoroughly enjoy your blog!!!! It is my go to site for sewing projects and just reading about what’s up!

    • 8.1
      Ashley says:

      Yay…..thanks so much Elizabeth! I can barely handle the wait…..Aggghh! (Yeah, I was terribly impatient as a child too. Nothing has changed!)

  9. 9
    Kinley says:

    Sorry about the hacker… But congrats on the book! That is so awesome! And the baby:)

    • 9.1
      Ashley says:

      Thanks Kinley! And you are still the only Kinley I know…..so I kind of love seeing your name pop up. Hope things are going well and my gosh, we need to catch up! I have no idea where you guys are these days! :)

  10. 10
    alicia says:

    Ugh, hackers are the worst! Glad you got it straightened out and didn’t lose anything!

    • 10.1
      Ashley says:

      Thanks Alicia…..and yes, I guess it could have been tons worse. So, I’m grateful he didn’t delete my site or take over facebook completely. Yeah, I’m dramatic but I’m glad I caught it when I did! :)

  11. 11
    Lynette says:

    A Hacker on a craft blog? Really? what is this world coming to?! I am so sorry you had to deal with it, and that you figured it out. I am excited to see the new changes around here, and hope that the book edits go well! :) I’m excited to hear more about it!

    • 11.1
      Ashley says:

      Haha…..I KNOW! That’s what I said. I mean, come on……how fun is a craft blog for some hacker person? It’s all full of color and daisies and probably nauseating things for someone who hacks. I hope he was bombarded with too many colorful things and that’s what chased him/her away! ;)

      And thanks……the book is at such a fun stage, I can’t even wait! :)

      • 11.1.1
        Stephanie says:

        Hackers are such jerks! I have gotten viruses on my PC twice from sites I thought were safe! One was looking up craft room ideas and one I was trying to find a photo of an updo for a wedding! Some people are such jerks…I wish they would use their brainpower for good and not evil! Anyway, can’t wait to buy your book! :)

  12. 12
    Tania says:

    I had a friend and hers was hacked. I was asked to send money because she was on vacation and hers was stolen. If this happens to you always ask them to answer a question only that person would know. When I asked the question they responded with “You got to be kidding me” and I replied “Just answer the question”. They clicked off real fast.

  13. 13
    Emma says:

    Uggh…..sorry about the hacker! My pinterest account was recently hacked. They changed my bio, added a new board and started pinning sites to earn money at home. I can’t imagine what it would be like to have them hack my site!! I’m going to go enhance my security right now! On a happier note…..I’m so excited to hear more about your book! :)

  14. 14
    Hope says:

    How’s stinking exciting!! Congrats, girl. Can’t wait to hear more about it!

  15. 15
    Hope says:

    I probably should’ve started with: I’ve been checking out your site for quite a while and thought this was as good a time as any to start commenting. Sorry for seeming like a creeper… But I promise I’m not from Kosovo, so I’m not THAT much of a creeper. :P

    PS: Kosovo? Really?! I guess it could be a compliment if someone is willing to hack your site…. Right? Haha… I’m trying!

  16. 16
    Whitney !Williams says:

    I kept wondering why my security software wouldn’t let me access the blog yesterday!! I thought it was on the fritz. Sorry you got hacked, but happy you’re back up and running today. :)

  17. 17
    Bryanna says:

    That is too bad your site got hacked! I just found your website last week and I really like it. I read that you went to BYU-Idaho. We live in Rexburg-my husband is a professor at BYU-I :)

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