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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    Can a bad site linking to your site hurt it?
    Was looking through stats for my site and found that the top site that's listed as linking to my site is a site that tries to spread trojan horses. If you visit the site with javascript enabled it hangs your browser up with a never ending series of java script prompts. Only way to get off of the site was to hit the Ctrl, Alt and Delete

    Had never heard of the site before and don't know why they're linking to my site. Umm don't know if them doing that can hurt my site in any way or not?? Not exactly too happy having them linking to it, tho.

    Don't know if the search engines would look down on my site cos of it or not even tho it's not my fault who links to me.

    Not jumping to any conclusions since I don't know....but do know for a fact that a niece of mine ordered 4 separate times from 2 different merchants from my site but none of them have appeared in any sales. (yeap, she knows to order thru my links and not to open any other windows, etc....so they should've registered as sales. ) There are clicks that have registered to those merchants but no sales. Was just being patient to see if they would show up before contacting the affiliate manager or merchant to ask about them. Am a bit uneasy I guess after learning about this site but not gonna go jumping to any conclusions.

    So...um is there any reason do ya think for me to be worried Would definitely prefer not to have this site linking to me but don't know if that's something I can control?? But....do ya think I should be worried and if so, is there anything I can do about it??

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    I wouldn't worry. A site shouldn't be able to hurt your ranking by linking to you. That would wreak havoc on any search engine algorithm as competitors try to hurt one another in a vicious cycle. Your tracking issue seems to be completely unrelated and should be taken up with the merchant.

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    Thanks Snib Your opinion definitely makes me feel better

    Other than if they were linking to mine in hopes of maybe a reciprocal link (only don't think I've gotten any request by them) any guesses as to why they'd be linking to me? According to the stats it says there's 16 pages.

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador newestuser's Avatar
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    i agree with snib.. a few links is probably not going to make a difference, but if your links start showing up in dozens of bad sites it will likely hurt your rankings, as those other sites get dropped, and they ding the sites they link to.

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    McAfee's Site Advisor might not stay green for your site(?). Don't know how many people rely on them but they show sites linked to bad sites with a yellow warning while the actual bad site gets a red label. For people who use it, it shows up on your site and on searches where your site is in the results. I believe that would be if you had links to them but if it is only back links I don't know how they would show it. You can check it out without installing the Site Advisor if you're curious.
    Last edited by 2busy; December 25th, 2007 at 11:52 PM. Reason: clarity

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador simcat's Avatar
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    I look at this like I would the other exploits used to damage a site- now or in the past.

    If your site is established and strong, probably nothing to worry about.
    If your site is new and vulnerable, or weakened in some other way (under suspicion?), might have an effect.

    http://www.jlh-design.com/2007/06/ot...-your-ranking/
    http://www.webmasterworld.com/forum30/35029.htm
    http://forums.searchenginewatch.com/...?t=6960&page=1
    Last edited by simcat; December 26th, 2007 at 03:34 AM.

  7. #7
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Was looking through stats for my site and found that the top site that's listed as linking to my site
    When you tried to check out the site, could you see a link to you anywhere?

    I'm thinking that it's probably a log spammer who didn't actually link at all, but merely made it look as if they did.
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    Thank you newestuser for your opinion, too. As far as I know there aren't other sites. Haven't done any backlinks checks or anything, tho.

    Husband was looking at stats, when he saw it he asked me who the site was since it said it had that amount of pages and was listed as the top site. He visited the site to see what it was and then got me to look at it cos it wouldn't let him do anything to get off of it. He's been told by me not to go clicking or downloading anything anytime anything pops up so knew not to do that. Since he wasn't able to get off of the site I finally just had him do the ctrl, alt and delete.

    I looked up the site on the domain tools site, it showed an aboutus for the site and listed a big warning about the trojans describing what it attempts to do, etc. I then went to the SiteAdvisor site, typed in the site but they said they didn't have any information about it at all.

    2busy
    Checked my site and I'm still listed as green. Does say something about having 2 sign up forms under the email it's checking. Not sure what that's about. I only have a contact us form on my site for anybody who wants to contact me and I have my email written as a link if they'd prefer to do it that way. (umm yeap lots wanting to increase a certain part of my anatomy that I don't have lol email me. ) Used to have a sign up for a newsletter but that ended quite a while ago.

    This morning I typed in the url and saw where the same thing happening to him showed up but noticed the url changes after typing it in and it's gone to another site. (Didn't click anything but umm could tell whatever the site was had some sorta video and ummm unless somebody was in a whole lotta pain lol was a porn site) Back to SiteAdvisor and that site's showing as a yellow. Says it may be promoted through spam. (that url isn't the one showing up under stats tho, it's the original site before it redirects to the porn site.

    simcat
    Thank you for those links Gonna go visit them to read. Uhh wouldn't exactly say my site's strong. lol guess depends on what's considered strong. lol Am I anywhere close to retiring due to all my sales??? Uhhh nope. lol It's around 4 years old I guess, so not new. Not doin anything at all that it should be thought of as under suspicion. If anybody reads my posts....you'd definitely come to the conclusion I don't even have a real clear idea as to what's considered under suspicion, lol and definitely don't have a clue how to do any of those things that would make it be under suspicion. lol So unless somebody else has managed to do something to my site it's as clean as it gets.

    Leader
    Nope, when he visited the site all he was getting was a black screen and the javascript prompt boxes. When I visited the site this morning using the aol browser it also was just a black screen (altho I noticed this morning that even tho the url was typed in, it redirected to the other site) Could tell there was some sort of video box behind the other boxes and aol had a box popping up saying I couldn't view the movie without installing some type of application. Wasn't about to touch anything since it had a trojan threat attached to the site.

    Thanks everybody for your opinions.

    Don't expect you to go explaining to me what a log spammer is (as I said earlier..umm am not one of the smarty's at all when it comes to this stuff so will have to go looking up what that means.)

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    ok, it gets a little weirder now. I just logged in and checked the stats for my much smaller and newer site. It lists the two sites I mentioned in the previous post (the one, then the one it redirects to) and now there's another site listed as the third that have a feeling is related to the other two cos it's pretty similar in what it's suggests it would be about and a variation of the other urls.

    My larger site is fairly general but this smaller and newer site is pretty specific in topic and has absolutely nothing at all to do with the subject of any of these three sites that are linking to it so if somebody's trying for a reciprocal link they're way off base. Only have related links that are pretty specifically related to what that site's about.

    So, don't have a clue why any of these three sites are linking now to both of my sites??

  10. #10
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I agree with Leader. If you're not seeing the links on their site, it very well could be referrer log spam. It's really simple to forge referrer data, and many webmasters will use this technique to get traffic. It's not effective at all, because it's very unqualified traffic, but in this case (where they're trying to infect browsers), it doesn't matter to them.
    Michael Coley
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    Ok, I made some searches to find out what a log spammer is and came up with something that sounds like what you're talking about:

    One clever method used by porn sites is to include an image tag in their page's html that calls your web site's home page. No image is loaded but visitors to the porn site generate a hit on your site that is logged by the server.

    When I typed in the url this morning, I can't see the site since I'm not about to download anything from it. (is just a black screen with a box on top of it that looks like a video or movie would show in it and there's a box saying you have to download something. There's evidently 3 of these sites doing this (think they're all related to each other)

    Michael and Leader
    Am sorry to have to say but don't really understand what all this means, so don't know if this is something I should be worrying about or attempting to stop or how to do it?? I certainly don't like the sounds of it but am really clueless as to just what all it means.? As far as I know, this just appeared in the last day or so. Don't know if that matters. Is there something I should be trying to do about this?

  12. #12
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by purplebear
    Am sorry to have to say but don't really understand what all this means, so don't know if this is something I should be worrying about or attempting to stop or how to do it?? I certainly don't like the sounds of it but am really clueless as to just what all it means.? As far as I know, this just appeared in the last day or so. Don't know if that matters. Is there something I should be trying to do about this?
    It means they're not really linking to you, but they're making it seem like it so you click over to their site and get infected.

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    They're doing that just to get me? Nobody else? So, they're kinda like just trying to bait me into going to their site so they can get me to click on those downloads and get me??? Hmmmm, seems like an awful lotta trouble to go to just on the assumption they can get me. hmmmm I'm not gonna go clicking on their downloads so they're not gonna get me then. lol

    Thank all of you very much, feel a lot better now.

  14. #14
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    It's probably not just you. They typically automate it and do it to thousands and thousands of sites.
    Michael Coley
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  15. #15
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    oh, ok I didn't word it correctly as to what I meant. What I meant is that they're trying to get me to do it but they're not it anyway able to divert any of my visitors to their site or popping up on my site or anything on anybody who's visiting it or at my site, or disguising themselves as my site or anything in any search results correct? If somebody else were to go there.....it wouldn't be because of my site, right? As long as I don't go clicking on their downloads, they're not hurting me right??

  16. #16
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey
    It's probably not just you. They typically automate it and do it to thousands and thousands of sites.
    Purplebear, what Michael said. I noticed 2 sites like this in my referrer logs a couple of months ago. What made me curious was that they were totally unrelated to my site that they linked to. One was an MP3 site and the other a Video site.

    WARNING - do not visit these sites. The first one that I tried to visit attempted to do a drive by installation of a trojan. In other words a click isn't necessary, simply visiting their site could get you infected.

    -rematt
    "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." - Richard Nixon

  17. #17
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
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    Great thread and great advice gang. THIS is the kind of information / education sharing that makes our neighborhood a valued place to live. :-)

    Thank you all for sharing and thanks to Purple for bringing this topic up - which led to a better understanding of the issue. Snib - I hope you are still ennjoying the cuisine over there!! Just wondered if you are starting to get a hankering for a good old hot dog on a stick!! LOL
    Join the Spicy Aprons Affiliate program on ShareASale Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/spicyaprons Follow us on Twitter @Spicyaprons

  18. #18
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    rematt
    Think we might have the same culprit. My larger site showed just the one site last night (but it redirects to another site) I checked my smaller site this morning and it has three of em listed. Haven't checked the other one yet this morning, by now maybe it does too. Yeap, that's what stood out to me was that they weren't in any way even remotely related to my little site. The larger one, I guess just about anything could relate to it. lol

    When I checked the domain, they had over 400 other domains and yeap, one's an mp3 site, other one a video and can't remember the third but it relates to that. You'd think SiteAdvisor should say something really bad about them??

    Uhh ooops he visited it last night, didn't download anything tho. I ran spybot and nothing showed up. Have free security from having the free aol version cos of an email account...don't know if that would've caught it on his last night or not.

    Umm, I visited this morning and thought I was safe cos I didn't click on anything

    "In other words a click isn't necessary, simply visiting their site could get you infected." Guess I better run a scan and hope nothing's found on my computer or I'll be back trying to get help with that. Guess will have to do it on his, too.

    Thanks very much for the info Appreciate it very much.

  19. #19
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Purplebear
    One clever method used by porn sites is to include an image tag in their page's html that calls your web site's home page. No image is loaded but visitors to the porn site generate a hit on your site that is logged by the server.
    Log spammers often won't even do that. There are scripts for sale that do it. The normal way it works is:

    The spammers send out a robot/spider to a whole bunch of sites. That robot is programmed so that it tells your logs that it was referred from whatever site the spammer wants traffic to.

    don't know if this is something I should be worrying about or attempting to stop or how to do it??
    If it's just log spam you can safely ignore it.*

    *I'm assuming your stats program does not allow the general public to see your stats.

  20. #20
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Hamilton
    Snib - I hope you are still ennjoying the cuisine over there!! Just wondered if you are starting to get a hankering for a good old hot dog on a stick!! LOL
    No doubt, just love the food here! Never was much of a hot dog fan, but I sure do miss a good chili relleno!

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

  21. #21
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    Alan said: "Great thread and great advice gang. THIS is the kind of information / education sharing that makes our neighborhood a valued place to live. :-) Thank you all for sharing and thanks to Purple for bringing this topic up - which led to a better understanding of the issue."

    Yeap, this definitely is a great place for anybody to try to learn....(some of us just take a bit longer to actually learn it. lol ) Still don't quite understand but least I have a general idea as to what's goin on. No thanks necessary, it's quite easy for me to bring up something I don't understand. lol there's so much there for me to choose from. lol

    As of this morning there's 4 of these sites now doing this to me. All related to the same topic.

    Leader said: "The spammers send out a robot/spider to a whole bunch of sites. That robot is programmed so that it tells your logs that it was referred from whatever site the spammer wants traffic to."

    Have a feelin after sayin this there may be some head shakin but umm I don't have any robots.txt. file cos I didn't know what it was but am beginning to think it's something I should have?? If I had one would I be able to stop those robots from doing that? Dummy question but is there a way for me to find out which robots are the bad robots since obviously I don't wanna stop the good robots. lol Actually have something in meta tags about it cos somebody told me to include it, but seems kinda dumb since I don't have any. lol

    At the risk of sounding even more of a dummy than I already do

    Leader said: "If it's just log spam you can safely ignore it.*
    *I'm assuming your stats program does not allow the general public to see your stats."

    The stats I'm referring to are just the stats in the cPanel at the hosting site. It requires a password to log in so am assuming the general public doesn't see it.

    I'm kinda feeling you may not think it's just log spam?? If not, what do you think it might be and any possible suggestions on what I should try to do about it??

    Thank you again everybody for helping me

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