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  1. #1
    Affiliate Manager guinness618's Avatar
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    What is up with Google Groups?
    I was doing my daily search for affiliates who have pilfered discount codes and I keep finding the codes listed with Google Groups accounts.
    When I try to find out more about the group, I find that the Google information is really just gibberish:

    Members: 1

    Description: The explanation of this his theory to the cylinder heads, being operated by the time it has ever been used by Zeppelin.

    I don't see where there are any affiliate links.

    Has anyone seen this before?
    Dyan Carlson
    ["My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness."- The Dalai Lama

  2. #2
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    It doesn't look affiliate-related (unless I'm missing something). It looks like they're scraping coupons and then using that "content" as search engine spam and feeding the traffic generated to third-tier search engines.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  3. #3
    Affiliate Manager guinness618's Avatar
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    Yes, and a lot of porn. I got trapped by a site that wouldn't let me out until it downloaded the ActiveX control. I just closed everything down and started over again.
    So this is a money-making activity?
    Dyan Carlson
    ["My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness."- The Dalai Lama

  4. #4
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Even if they're just getting a penny a click, if they put enough SE spam out there, it adds up.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    I got trapped by a site that wouldn't let me out until it downloaded the ActiveX control.
    You can always close the browser window. I would run a real good scan after being "forced" to download anything.

  6. #6
    Affiliate Manager guinness618's Avatar
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    nope, it wouldn't let me out. very scary.
    and you bet your sweet patootie i ran a full scan.
    i even sprayed my keyboard with disinfectant....ewww
    Dyan Carlson
    ["My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness."- The Dalai Lama

  7. #7
    Merchant & ABW Ambassador
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    Content harvesting and lots of spam.

    I bought a few things off google groups a few years back..

  8. #8
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by guinness618
    I got trapped by a site that wouldn't let me out until it downloaded the ActiveX control.
    I got caught in the same download loop.
    Quote Originally Posted by 2busy
    You can always close the browser window.
    Not always. You can't close IE (through normal methods) when a dialog box pops up, and that site kept the dialog boxes coming up every time you closed it.

    I got around it by hitting Control-Alt-Del and closing iexplore.exe from the Task Manager.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    You're right, as long as you're connected. I hit my stop traffic button in those situations and close it right away. It just disconnects me from my network.

    There are an awful lot of sites out there that are cram packed with nonsense phrases and domain names that seem to go right to the top for searches and then try to download junk to your system if you go there. I get two or three notifications from Google alerts every day because one of my domain names is one that they are using in their scheme. This has been increasing exponentially since last spring. I'm not seeing any in Google Groups yet but it sounds like the same kind of method.
    Anyone can open a "group" at Google Groups, it's practically anonymous, it's free and it's like a blog or forum - in a "good" neighborhood too.

  10. #10
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    I have seen this crop up in the last week via trademark Google Alerts. Not sure what to do with it.

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    I take the keyword phrase they are targeting and type it into search. The site is usually in the top 3 positions. when you click on their link in Google and go there and it starts trying to download I disconnect, but I have a record from the FF LiveHeaders plugin so that info is sent to Google in my GWT acct. as a report of spam in the index. Next I go to Badware.org and report the download there along with the headers info. It is very time consuming and they pop up faster than I can take the time to report them. I am quite certain that what I see is only a tiny fraction of the sites involved. I wish they offered a simple way to just submit a list to them every day.

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