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Referal spam and PageRank
Could links in my Web stats give me Google problems?
Reid




msg:725687
 11:49 pm on Mar 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

I have recently begun receiving referral spam in my logfiles and awstats from an adult related site.

After doing a bit of research I found this is a rapidly growing problem.
My concern is that having these links in my stats, server logs google may somehow associate my non-adult site with this adult content.

Does google crawl these files at all?

Do I have anything to worry about?

[edited by: ciml at 1:01 pm (utc) on Mar. 4, 2005]

 

Conard




msg:725688
 12:19 am on Mar 4, 2005 (gmt 0)

Just block access to the directory and no one will see the logs that you don't want including Google or any bot.

arrowman




msg:725689
 1:10 am on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

Does google crawl these files at all?

That's up to you. You can protect these pages with a password (that's what I do) or exclude them in robots.txt.

After doing a bit of research I found this is a rapidly growing problem.

That's why Google invented the rel="nofollow" attribute of <a> recently.

lego_maniac




msg:725690
 1:55 am on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

I have recently begun receiving referral spam in my logfiles and awstats from an adult related site.

Sometimes the offending referrals come from unscrupulous website that src your images (and freeload your bandwidth). You might want to check if this is the case.

Regarding PageRank, try to exclude your awstats from public eyes, Google's bot, or both. The information helps you become a better webmaster but serves little purpose for visitors.

I love it when one of my competitors have publicly viewable webstats. By comparing their stats and my stats, I can easily tell how to out-optimize them. (if webstats isn't immediately apparent, sometimes trying www.domain.com/webalizer/ or /usage or /stats yields the info you're looking for)

vabtz




msg:725691
 2:30 am on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

A better reason to not have your logs public is that your competitor can analyze them and see how to exploit your success and weaknesses.

thats how I learned a ton!

spaceylacie




msg:725692
 2:57 am on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

That site thinks that there is a chance you will link back to them... that's the only reason why they would list you, in my experience.

Let them know that you will not link back and have your link removed, it's worth it in the long run.

Reid




msg:725693
 9:08 am on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

Thats the thing, this guy is NOT linking to me but is showing up in my stats as an inbound link. I got another one now - diet pills. And some illegible search queries. This is definitely referral spam.

Reid




msg:725694
 9:15 am on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

my stats are not public - this is a bot or something spamming me with false requests.
I did start another thread about this:
[webmasterworld.com ]

This thread was about the effects of referral spam on pagerank ect. If you have a blog keep a close eye on it because comment spam is really getting out of hand in some places.

lego_maniac




msg:725695
 10:34 am on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

my stats are not public

Then you'll have nothing to worry about since Google shouldn't be able to access it.

If you're viewing your access logs through a web interface, they should be similarly be protected using the same mechanism that you put your stats behind.

this is a bot or something spamming me with false requests...

...This thread was about the effects of referral spam on pagerank ect. If you have a blog keep a close eye on it because comment spam is really getting out of hand in some places.

Referral spam is a non-issue so long as it's not publicly viewable (thus has zero effect on PageRank). Webmasters who try to be cute and put "Latest referrals" lists at the bottom of their websites are the ones being targetted by this junk.

artdog




msg:725696
 4:21 pm on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

Found a site that recently appeared in G SERPs and is fairly new. Checking backlinks shows over 29,000 and they are all from log spams.

Reid




msg:725697
 7:49 pm on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

artdog - how could that be possible since log spams are non-existant?
Google counts backlinks from the actual links.

artdog




msg:725698
 10:07 pm on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

Reid
All I know is that all the backward links look like this:

[stats.sum-site.com...]
Decription text follows here.
URL of stats page here.

Edited for TOS of course.

ogletree




msg:725699
 11:09 pm on Mar 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

They are probably using a special search string or ua so they can see if what they are doing is in the index. Look at your log file and whatever unique thing they are using block that in the htaccess file. Put that directory in the robots.txt they should go away.

Reid




msg:725700
 12:13 am on Mar 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

My guess is that they have a bot which locates and spams unprotected log files.
That way the links get crawled and show up.
You should report this, over 29,000 logs spammed.

artdog




msg:725701
 6:23 pm on Mar 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

Even so gotta wonder how effective it is because one of my sites suddenly ranks in the the top 6 for about 30 keyword phrases, with many number 1 positions with only about 80 backlinks. All of this ranks above them, I'll just keep an eye on it for now.

You have to think this would be very easy for a bot to recognize and eliminate.

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