We have noticed that hundreds of our webpages are being duplicated in the google index and are being indexed in google but we have not published any of these URLs. The unusual thing is that all the duplicated pages contain our domain name i.e. our actual domain in the base part of the URL as if it was hosted on our webserver.
e.g. our legitimate homepage is like this:
and the duplicated pages that are indexed in google for the above page are like this:
etc: there may be dozens of the pages 2 and 3 all with duplicate content from the legitimate page
Repeated dozens of times
All the URLs are have a "?" (question mark without the quotes" in the URL. We do not publish pages with a "?" in any of our pages. We only have static HTML pages on our website. We do not use a database or content management system. Just static HTML pages.
We were alerted there was a problem a week ago when we notice our homepage disappeared from google index - even a specific search for the page does not produce any result. Then another of our pages started to drop from position 1 to position 6 then other pages started dropping ranking positions.
All the duplicate page URLs have duplicate content of a legitimate page on our website but these pages are not physically hosted on our site - are not hosted on our website. We are therefore not clear how those pages got into the Google index. The problem is that there are hundreds of URLs that are copies of our homepage but with different URLs all of these URLs are cached in Google, so it appears that google thinks these are legit pages when infact they are not. If we click on the link in google then we see the legitimate page content but with the bogus URLs. Non of the bogus URL are on our server.
Does anyone know what is happening here and what we can do to stop this issue and ensure these duplicate pages are not indexed in google and other engines?