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How to control referer spam hits from search engines

Started by on Sep 05, 2005 – Contents updated: Sep 05, 2005

Sep 05, 2005 01:17    

For months, I've wondered why referrer spammers only spam two of my very "confidential" blogs (a few visits a month) while my other very popular blogs (several thousand page views a day) weren't suffering from referrer spam. All my blogs are managed by the same [url=http://b2evolution.net]b2evolution[/url] install and use the same domain! Then, I read the following [url=http://b2evolution.net]b2evolution[/url] documentation page:
[list][url=http://b2evolution.net/man/2004/12/29/control_referer_spam_howto]How to control referer spam hits from search engines[/url][/list:u]where one can read:
How to control referer spam hits from search engines wrote:

Referer spammers use a couple of methods to find you, and a big one is using the search engines. They look for "top referer" and "recent referer" and "disp=stats" knowing that if you have those then you are a b2evolution user and that they can spam you.

My very popular blogs used customized skins to display, none of them used the "top referer", "recent referer", nor "disp=stats" keywords, while the spammed blogs used common [url=http://b2evolution.net]b2evolution[/url] skins including at least one of those terms (either in the page itself or in its URL). The solution appears to be clear (as explained in [url=http://b2evolution.net/man/2004/12/29/control_referer_spam_howto]How to control referer spam hits from search engines[/url]): avoid to publish publicly available statistics (or at least avoid to use the above terms) and avoid to index those pages in search engines by using the robots meta tag.

For more information, have a look there:
[list]

  • [url=http://b2evolution.net/man/2004/12/29/control_referer_spam_howto]How to control referer spam hits from search engines[/url]

  • [url=http://forums.b2evolution.net/viewtopic.php?t=4459]Search Engine Optimization (SEO)[/url]

  • [*][url=http://blog.lesperlesduchat.com/dev.php/2005/07/31/b2evolution_search_engines_optimization]b2evolution: Search Engines Optimization[/url][/list:u]And have a look there:[list][*][url=http://forums.b2evolution.net/viewforum.php?f=30]Fighting spam! (b2evolution forum)[/url][*][url=http://forums.b2evolution.net/viewforum.php?f=28]Got Spam? (b2evolution forum)[/url][/list:u]Now, even if my blogs are no more referenced in search engines, I still have referrer spam on them. I'm afraid once in spammers' databases, you never leave them... The best solution is to never appear on the web with the above keywords. In other words, skin developers/artist should not include them by default in the skins they publish and should include a well configured robots meta tag...

    Sep 06, 2005 23:15

    That's a good point. I have always used a customized skin that has all the stats stuff removed (I don't care about telling people how popular I am), and I've never gotten any spam on my blog of any kind, even though I get a lot of hits from Google search results.

    Sep 07, 2005 00:46

    I think there's a lot more to it than the stats page. Both my blogs get spam, but rarely does the same domain get pushed on both. One has stats renamed as traffic, and the other only shows search engine stats. It too is traffic instead of stats. Searching for "powered by b2evolution" shows who has a b2evolution blog. Many other search strings find b2evolution blogs as well. Sometimes I think posting in these forums is a sure-fire way to get on their lists. Pinging seems like an advertisement spammers can't resist too.

    Sep 07, 2005 04:36

    I added some TLDs to my (local!) antispam blacklist (including .ru, .biz, .info and other after adding a specific whitelist of trusted sites with some of those banned keywords) used to build my filtering .htaccess. That reduced a lot of spam, but I still had spam on my "disp=stats" pages and other pages containing "top referer" and so keywords.

    Now I removed those keywords and pages and after submitting them to the most popular search engines, I have to notice spammers are extremly are to reach my blogs.

    Using custom keywords to designate a blog "traffic" (you're right!) or images into skins as default should reduce spamming...

    Oct 07, 2005 05:42

    Worked through the steps described here to get rid of all spam. We'll see how it holds up in the next few days. Thanks for the solutions - especially the tab for banning IP addresses - that saved me a lot of time on some of the pharmaceutical spams, and should keep them out in the future.


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