October 22, 2020


cmd.exephoto © 2009 *n3wjack’s world in pixels | more info (via: Wylio)By Chaplain Mike

Our top-notch web technician Joe the Plumber has spent all weekend thus far working with our hosting company to restore Internet Monk after a hacker’s attack shut us down.

We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused you. We value your partnership here at IM and thank you for your understanding and patience.

It is hoped we will be back to posting new articles later today.


Chaplain Mike


  1. First the server overload, and now this. Maybe it’s my Pentecostal background, but I think it’s possible that this is confirmation you guys are on the right track, and somebody ( >:-} ) is trying to trip you up …

    • your Pentecostal background radar going off???


      my post-charismatic wilderness experience will most certainly agree there is that possibility, but then i would also understand every instance of such cyber-burps not spiritually sourced…

      i do agree too that the topics & lively responses addressing many a sore spot for those that identify with the wilderness landscape. i have been enjoying the interaction more lately. hmmm…what a quirky coincidence then?

      • Deep in a dark, and crowded basement of Bethlehem Baptist in Minneapolis or Mars Hill in Seattle, I wonder if there’s someone with a smirk on their face saying…”Mission accomplished Pastor ____________!!”

  2. Hacked? o_O

    Boy, the CCM people must be *really* annoyed by the articles!

    • Martha: i am going to attend a Latin Mass in about 1 hour. just a curiosity factor since i served as an altar boy when the Mass was in Latin. i want to find out if i remember some of the liturgy…

      stay tuned for my update later… 😉

      • Dan Crawford says

        Having served as an acolyte during the Tridentine glory days of the 50s and having studied Latin for 6 years, I have no inclination to attend a Latin Mass. I love Latin and I love the Latin liturgy, I nonetheless pray in English and have no wish to return to the days when the only sound during the Masses I served was the clicking of rosary beads. I’m not interested in a liturgy which serves primarily as the backdrop for private devotion. Perhaps (and I hope it is) your experience will be different. (BTW, this remark is not to suggest that I love the post-Vatican II liturgy or the “reform” that is about to sprung on Catholics.)

        • no theological implication intended on my experience…

          it is just a pleasant jog down memory lane & a curiosity factor for me.

          besides, the walk to church a nice one & the Mass simply a brief time-out from a rather hectic life journey that has me here in my new town for ~3 weeks now.

          i will let others know what i experience in a later posting…


  3. Dan Crawford says

    “be sprung on”

  4. What would be the reason/benefit for some one to hack this site?


    • maybe they were trying to get some real spiritual mojo…

      find out what makes those post-Evangelical wilderness types tick…

      see what energy drink(s) they are consuming or what wilderness foods are being touted…


    • Talked to Joe the Plumber and he tells me hackers like this are generally trying to find a way of getting into our customers’ computers so that they can begin scanning it and tracking online activity for identity theft purposes. Nice, huh?

      • Do we know which hackers have done this? I read in the newspaper the other day that they can leave a sign, etc..?

    • Because they are trying to break us out of the Matrix. Duh! 😉

  5. Gotta love wordpress/PHP.

    Did they get a hold of email addresses?

    • Don’t think so, but that’s always possible. The type of malware that I found is most commonly used to hijack incoming visitors, re-direct you to a bogus site and entice you to click a link. At that point, your system is compromised (without you ever knowing it) and your identity, financial info, etc. is forwarded off to some obscure location in the Ukraine.

      The good news is, no one should have been victimized by this attack. We’ve built the iMonk site on the best and most secure platform available for WordPress and rather than let the malicious code take over the site – it shut itself down.

      It’s pretty nasty stuff – but it’s really encouraging to know that the safeguards we’ve implemented did their job.

      If it had managed to get your email, you’d know it by now – you’d be seeing a whole new spam flood.

      • Where do hackers like this operate? Do we know from where the attack came?

        • This is common stuff. These guys are most likely overseas. There is a lot money in hacking websites in order to redirecting visitors to fake anti-virus, banking, or other financial sites to steal personally-identifiable information and credit card information. They constantly scan the internet for vulnerable websites; in the case of websites (like WordPress) which are written in PHP, this is a never-ending game of cat and mouse, patch, patch, and patch again.

        • The trail for most of this eventually leads back to the Ukraine and other parts of the former USSR. There is an entire business economy based on selling bank account logins and billing credit cards for fake charges. Two different but very profitable endeavors. This is where much of the malware attacks eventually wind up.

          Then there’s the “legal” SPAM. This is where they are actually trying to sell you something and keep sharing your email address with their “partners”. Once you get on these lists you either invest in some good SPAM filters or abandon the email address.

  6. Thanks for all your hard work on this, Joe!

  7. You guys just gotta stay up. You are a beacon of hope in a dreary landscape, and have no idea how badly your encouragement and insight is a daily source of grace. I’m just glad they were able to fix it. Demons in the network, I rebuke you!

  8. This got me thinking about several things. While my blog just passed the 1,600 post mark, I’m not sure anyone but me would cry if it crashed. But IM has many classic articles that you wouldn’t want to lose.

    So my question is, Do you have backup of the actual content, or can a mere wordpress.com user like myself without a specific domain name back some of their content up somewhere?

    • We’re backed up, Paul. And the gratifying thing is that the site did just what it was supposed to do when attacked; it shut down. We’re making some other moves soon that will enhance our security even more. Thanks for your concern.

    • Paul – check through the WordPress.com plug-in repository for plug-ins that will perform database (or even full site) backups. If your site goes down, a database backup will allow you to fully restore the site from the most recent backup.

      I personally like the wp-DBManager (for WordPress.org installs – not sure if it’s available for .com). It backs up the database, keeps a copy on the server, emails a copy to whomever you like and it has automatic database optimization to keep things running smoothly.

      Another option is to use the new VaultPress (paid) service.