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We have an e-commerce site that is hosted and 'taken care of' by a professional third party. We have no technical experience ourselves , but I did a lot of DIY SEO and managed to get No. 1 positions for 4 chosen keyword searhes and recently achieved No.15 for the most elusive 'widgets online Ireland'
Whilst busy at other parts of our business in the run up to Christmas someone hijacked our site and used it to send out 38,500 spam emails bearing no relation to our business. The server pulled the site and it wasn't until I tried to access our logs and couldn't that I discovered what had happen.
The site was down for 8 days (just before Christmas) and now our rankings have dropped dramatically.
Is this action of closing down the site without asking questions or looking into the situation legal?
Should the third party looking after the site, who is responsible for the security, be held accountable at all here - or could this happen to anyone?
I'm obviously very mad but don't want to be unreasonable, is there anything I can do
If you feel that you might want to go down that route then you should seek professional advice in your country.
The good news is that you should expect your rankings to return (assuming that they weren't about to change anyway). How long varies, depending on the engine and on the exact time of the outage.