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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 20th, 2011
    Curious About Link Cloaking Software
    I know that affiliate links can be chopped off so the affiliate's ID is removed and thereby the person does not earn from a viewer clicking on the ad. But i'm wondering about actual ID's being replaced so another ID gets the commission. How is that possible when only the affiliate can edit the URL of the affiliate link itself by logging in right?

    I have a link cloaking software already and understand its basics but I wonder if there really is a need for it aside from the chopping off of ID's? Real curious if links can indeed be replaced.

    Please help. Thanks.

  2. #2
    ...and a Pirate's heart. Convergence's Avatar
    Join Date
    June 24th, 2005
    Sound like you're more interested in how to do it yourself versus protecting yourself from it.

    Try the blackhat forums.

    If I'm wrong - oops...
    Salty kisses, Sandy toes, and a Pirate's heart...

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 17th, 2005
    Tropical Mountaintop
    I would worry far more about cookie overwriting than affiliate link tampering. Maybe one shopper in a gazillion might even think about messing with an URL. Cloaking is not intended to prevent URL tinkering although that might be seen as some side benefit (?) by some.

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  5. #4
    Join Date
    May 20th, 2011
    thanks to both of you.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    May 26th, 2011
    Upstate New York, USA
    Most people aren't in the habit of chopping off affiliate links in order to keep affiliates from making money. Most people barely have any idea what an url even is, let alone the various parts of it and how to tell if there is an affiliate link in it.

    However, there are those (as pointed out, one in a gazillion), who will try to steal your affiliate commission. Whether this is a big problem or not depends on whether the market you're selling in has a large number of affiliates, such as in the Internet Marketing niche itself where a majority of buyers are likely to be affiliates (as in Clickbank).

    If a link isn't "cloaked", and it's an affiliate link to an affiliate network, another affiliate on the same network can easily see and copy the link, insert their affiliate code, and then make the purchase. Even if the link is cloaked, if the buyer find out it point to a network that they're a member of, they can still find the product, create a link with their affiliate ID, and make the purchase themselves. You can't worry over or do anything about this, but in most niche markets, it's not that much of a problem

    Cookies, no matter what url they're associated with, are only good as long as they are kept in the browser. Lots of people these days use software to clean their browser on a regular basis, and thus can erase the cookie.

    I quoted the word "cloaked" above because this is a word with a number of meanings, as some types of url cloaking is used to fool search engines and is considered "black hat."

    Simply using and url shortener like is a form of cloaking in that one link is used to redirect to another, and so the user and search bots both cannot immediately see where the url links to, which is one of its main purposes, but the other is to create a shorter url that can be used in text messages and emails.

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