Adwords

So I temporarily got banned by adwords.  My takeaway here Google adwords isn’t the only game in down anymore.  Adwords has since reinstated my account.  But it was very frustrating.  They sent me a notice saying I was hosting malware.  At this point I’m thinking: “are they crazy?”, “did I get hacked”, “are they scanning the wrong site?”.  I called their support line.

The problem is their support people are useless.  You may already know my base domain directs to a shopify site.  I have very little control over that obviously, other than some minor edits to the theme.liquid file that I generally use for tracking codes.  mautic.myshopifydomain.com, however, points at this server, to a mautic install that I’ve been using for email marketing, tracking, and landing page A/B testing.

Naturally my first questions were “which subdomain did you find serving malware”, and “what was the exact URL that you found serving malware”.  They sent me links they had found on my site, but did not answer either of those questions.  They simply kept repeating we gave you all the necessary information, please scan your site.  I asked what scan tool I should use, and no answer.  I eventually found the issue was a typo.  I had writing .com.com somewhere through copypasting wrong, com.com was redirecting to one of those parking sites that is all banner ads, and one of those was flagged as high risk.

Now the more infuriating part.  I said I fixed the first link, but could not find the second (I now believe the second was being dynamically inserted by the first “.com.com” javascript link).  For a full day, the google representative kept responding that it was still flagging and check again.  I sent him two screen shots of different scanners including google transparency report, and he said those tools aren’t good enough, scan thoroughly.

When I called and asked for the supervisor, that person said my site had been scanning clean since that morning, and should have been cleared for ads already.  He then refused to admit that his employee was lying to me all day.

I will now exclusively use bing ads, they have a better clickthrough rate anyway.

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