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302 Redirects continues to be an issue

     
6:23 pm on Feb 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

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It is now 100% certain that any site can destroy low to midrange pagerank sites by causing googlebot to snap up a 302 redirect via scripts such as php, asp and cgi etc supported by an unseen randomly generated meta refresh page pointing to an unsuspecting site. The encroaching site in many cases actually write your websites location URL with a 302 redirect inside their server. This is flagrant violation of copyright and manipulation of search engine robots and geared to exploit and destroy websites and to artificially inflate ranking of the offending sites.

Many unethical webmasters and site owners are already creating thousands of TEMPLATED (ready to go) SKYSCRAPER sites fed by affiliate companies immense databases. These companies that have your website info within their databases feed your page snippets, without your permission, to vast numbers of the skyscraper sites. A carefully adjusted variant php based redirection script that causes a 302 redirect to your site, and included in the script an affiliate click checker, goes to work. What is very sneaky is the randomly generated meta refresh page that can only be detected via the use of a good header interrogation tool.

Googlebot and MSMBOT follow these php scripts to either an internal sub-domain containing the 302 redirect or serverside and “BANG” down goes your site if it has a pagerank below the offending site. Your index page is crippled because googlebot and msnbot now consider your home page at best a supplemental page of the offending site. The offending sites URL that contains your URL is indexed as belonging to the offending site. The offending site knows that google does not reveal all links pointing to your site, takes a couple of months to update, and thus an INURL:YOURSITE.COM will not be of much help to trace for a long time. Note that these scripts apply your URL mostly stripped or without the WWW. Making detection harder. This also causes googlebot to generate another URL listing for your site that can be seen as duplicate content. A 301 redirect resolves at least the short URL problem so aleviating google from deciding which of the two URL's of your site to index higher, more often the higher linked pagerank.

Your only hope is that your pagerank is higher than the offending site. This alone is no guarantee because the offending site would have targeted many higher pagerank sites within its system on the off chance that it strips at least one of the targets. This is further applied by hundreds of other hidden 301 permanent redirects to pagerank 7 or above sites, again in the hope of stripping a high pagerank site. This would then empower their scripts to highjack more efficiently. Sadly supposedly ethical big name affiliates are involved in this scam, they know it is going on and google adwords is probably the main target of revenue. Though I am sure only google do not approve of their adsense program to be used in such manner.

Many such offending sites have no e-mail contact and hidden WHOIS and no telephone number. Even if you were to contact them, you will find in most cases that the owner or webmaster cannot remove your links at their site because the feeds are by affiliate databases.

There is no point in contacting GOOGLE or MSN because this problem has been around for at least 9 months, only now it is escalating at an alarming rate. All pagerank sites of 5 or below are susceptible, if your site is 3 or 4 then be very alarmed. A skyscraper site only need create child page linking to get pagerank 4 or 5 without the need to strip other sites.

Caution, trying to exclude via robots text will not help because these scripts are nearly able to convert daily.

Trying to remove a link through google that looks like
new.searc**verywhere.co.uk/goto.php?path=yoursite.com%2F will result in your entire website being removed from google’s index for an indefinite period time, at least 90 days and you cannot get re-indexed within this timeline.

I am working on an automated 302 REBOUND SCRIPT to trace and counteract an offending site. This script will spider and detect all pages including sub-domains within an offending site and blast all of its pages, including dynamic pages with a 302 or 301 redirect. Hopefully it will detect the feeding database and blast it with as many 302 redirects as it contains URLS. So in essence a programme in perpetual motion creating millions of 302 redirects so long as it stays on. As every page is a unique URL, the script will hopefully continue to create and bombard a site that generates dynamically generated pages that possesses php, asp, cigi redirecting scripts. A SKYSCRAPER site that is fed can have its server totally occupied by a single efficient spider that continually requests pages in split seconds continually throughout the day and week.

If the repeatedly spidered site is depleted of its bandwidth, it may then be possible to remove it via googles URL removal tool. You only need a few seconds of 404 or a 403 regarding the offending site for google’s url console to detect what it needs. Either the site or the damaging link.

I hope I have been informative and to help anybody that has a hijacked site who’s natural revenue has been unfairly treated. Also note that your site may never gain its rank even after the removal of the offending links. Talking to offending site owners often result in their denial that they are causing problems and say that they are only counting outbound clicks. And they seam reluctant to remove your links....Yeah, pull the other one.

[edited by: Brett_Tabke at 9:49 pm (utc) on Mar. 16, 2005]

6:58 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I think we are all missing something here. There are literally thousands of websites, many of which have been around for years, legitimately using 302 redirects. Website directories and banner scripts often use 302 to track clicks for example and I think it must be 302 used in combination with something else which causes the problem, if there is one.

My own site has links from directory sites using 302 redirects, some of the 302 links are from pages with higher PR than my own site, yet so far my site still remains in the index. I've also looked at a snapshot of other sites listed in one particular directory using 302 redirects, and can't find one that has been replaced.

Whether or not Google has a problem with 302s, I'm not really in a position to comment, but if it does have a problem there does not appear to be a consistent pattern unless anyone else can suggest otherwise?

7:03 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Once again its not a 302 redirect problem its a Google problem, they just dont know how to spider/handle the redirects like other big search engines wisenut, Yahoo...
7:08 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Just came to my mind.

method---status/type/charset-----------------target

GET------302 text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1--**://pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/iclk-...

GET------302 text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1--**://pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/adclick?sa=...

GET------200 text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1--TARGET WEBSITE

How does this work then?

edit:
This what happens when user clicks on Ads By Advertisers...

[edited by: blend27 at 7:39 pm (utc) on Mar. 12, 2005]

7:21 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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ok I'm caught up. So google did a tweak on some inbound 302 handling, great.

What is *really* needed is a way to validate content that resides at your domain. Read like a md5 hash/key that can only be read from a server at your domain and that can have a type of variance system? i'm just fishing here...

why?

I can easily write a script to slurp up results on google, farm the urls, fetch their sites, rewrite the files and comapany names, and feed them into my own site with full valid urls in each page, masking their domain names. no meta refreshes or 301/302 redirects.

have fun with that hijack. I now have a 10k+ page website full of valid content, rewritten images, styles and text, all built from nothing, but my competitors content.

7:24 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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A decription of my website has appeared under my meta description in google, when a search is done for my main keyword, which I haven't included anywhere on the site! Does this mean my page has been hijacked or are google doing this? Any help appreciated.
7:52 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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kilonox -- try copyscape dot com
7:58 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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dawlish,

One problem that may be taking place is the result of "duplicate content" filter taking hold. Google has classified these pages as being part of your site.

As I said earlier, Google has all of the required information to handle this properly.

Are the users of 302 intentionally causing the problem no (not 99.99% of them) as you noted thousands (I dare say millions) of sites are using 302s.

I think that over time all of the SEs have had a problem with redirects.

Now having said that I'd also like to remind the posters to this thread that 301 and 302s are:

1: Not the only redirect indicating status codes.

2: Only server status codes and like all server status codes of the refering server your server doesn't have access to them.

3: The only 302 redirect that you might possibly want to block is the one that the SE bot is following. This places you in the same postion as 2 above. Why, because a client following the redirect is a qualified visitor and could be converted.

Now on to other bits of information:

There is nothing at all that requires a script to be used to carry out the same ends. The same thing can be done using html. I leave that as an exercise for the reader.

There are far more insidious means of hijacking pages ones that allow the hijackers to take your high serp pages. These result in Google displaying your information in its snippets but when the site is clicked on you are refreshed to the hijackers site.

8:01 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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It would be nice if some Google representative logs in here and shares some advice on how to tackle this hijacking problem & if they could give us some email address where to report offending sites.

every time a webmaster looses free traffic he will probably end up buying that traffic from google.
they have soo many phd's and they've known about this issue soo long there's no way they couldn't have fixed it by now.

Google is still trying to look like the good guy and not come right out and say it, thats why GG won't be commenting on this. Of course i'd love to be wrong.

8:04 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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dawlish-

<<I think we are all missing something here. There are literally thousands of websites, many of which have been around for years, legitimately using 302 redirects.>>

Correct. But, no one seems to want to hear it, though.

I believe the problem is either caused by a few specialized scripts whose purpose is to "provide clean [redirected] urls," or as Japanese states, a combination of script/cloaking voodoo.

8:06 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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as far as capitalizing on this problem, now webmasterworld is offering a hint of a fix in thier subscribers forum for this issue on the front page.
I guess we now know who's in it for what.
8:12 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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It's strange that people would rather debate "Google is broke" than fix their sites, but there are many things I'll never understand

there is no way to fix our sites, we must bring make this impossible for google to ignore, by any means nessecary.

8:49 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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blend27 - I'm not sure how large their database is (copyscape), or if it is even unique, but they would be hard pressed to be able to search 8+ billion pages for stuff that wasnt exactly like your page. Although Its a good idea, I doubt copyscape can really find smart plagerizers(sp). It looks like they are comparing keyword saturations and other such things.

Dont miss my point, google should change they way they are handling 302s links. there are more than one "hows" for them to accomplish that. Does it put a stop to smart hijackers on the net? hardly.

9:35 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I believe the problem is either caused by a few specialized scripts whose purpose is to "provide clean [redirected] urls," or as Japanese states, a combination of script/cloaking voodoo.

IMO - Definately a mixture of the two affecting us

seems to be only certain scripts, there has been a serious boom in PHP build a directory in seconds scripts just lately along with others, couple that with G adding (according to them) millions of pages into their main index and it could explain the obvious problems.

some of our scripts (CGI) return a 302 and they haven't touched other sites, IMHO there are too many exceptions for it to be just plain 302.

the internet is full of 302s, if they alone were the problem it would be a mess ;o)

All supposition obviously, whatever the cause I just hope it gets sorted one way or another.

good luck to all

Dazz

10:22 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Stargeek - If we had a solution in WebmasterWorld Supporters Forum to this or knew anything from google if they are fixing the problem, we would tell you in a min., this forum is no capital forum, here we share.
10:27 pm on Mar 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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kilonox - I used their services a couple of times and found a few sites that use my content, we have a custom written descriptions for our products written by a lady that wrote a book that is published on the Oprah Site - so I would doubt that she would copy thouse.

here ia a papasite

windowposition dot net -

I've downloaded this plugin fo IE called IEWatch, it lets you watch the status codes while specific URL Loads. this URL is a refferer in my logs on many ocasions "***p://hitstats dot net / stats /?VFJDSz0xMjcw". whent to that URL page refreshes many frames. so I turned the toolbar plug in "IEWatch". and here we go., framed 302s like crazy or proxy redirects. I remember being contacted by a company that offered us to be above google. same thing as "seachclumbers". I dont know if I am right 100% on it, but to me looks bad.

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