Owning a website in today’s world is both easy and challenging. It doesn’t take much to set up a basic website. From purchasing a domain to launching a simple design, almost everyone can have a website. However, running a successful website is a different story. In order to attract attention, you need a lot of original and engaging content to offer your visitors. With thousands and thousands of sites on any given topic, being unique and informative is the only way to get ahead. Once you’ve created great content for your viewers, your job still isn’t done. The next big step is to find a way to protect your content from web scrapers and content copiers. Although this can be a daunting task, there are many options available to keep your web content safe.
Widespread Content Theft
Whether it’s called content harvesting, web scraping, or something else, the theft of internet content is on the rise and becoming a serious problem. While many people have manually copied something from the internet, automated scraping takes this act of plagiarism to a whole new level. As important as it is to create unique content, web scraping can negate the hard work necessary to create a good website. Content scraping has become so ubiquitous primarily because it is so easy. The automated tools that can be used to scrape websites for valuable data have become advanced and are widely available. Content scraping can go undetected for a long time in most cases. It’s an easy way out for people who want to make money through their websites without putting in much work.
Web scraping can have a major impact on a website. It can cause the original website to lose authority and web traffic, which can result in a big loss in profits. On top of that, it is frustrating to know that someone else is gaining from your hard work. Therefore, it is important to try to protect your content against scraping. Many people wonder if there are any effective anti scraping programs for website owners. Luckily, the answer is yes.
Can Web Scraping Be Stopped?
As widespread and easy as web scraping is, many people wonder if it can even be stopped. While there is no simple fix to completely wipe out web scraping, there are tools that can be put in place to stop it, or at least slow it down. It takes special tools to stop web scraping. Firewalls do not have the ability to prevent these advanced programs from taking the content they want. Therefore, it takes a stronger effort to prevent scraping from happening to your site.
There are some basic steps a website owner can take to prevent web scraping. Some of these steps include clearly stating terms and conditions on the website which forbid the copying of content. However, these words won’t have much impact on automated software. It’s important for website owners to take bigger steps against content scraping. By checking for content harvesting on a regular basis, website owners can help to ensure that their content has not been ripped off.
Catching Content Theft
There are many programs available that allow website owners to catch content theft. Some of these programs catch it after the fact. For example, Copyscape allows a website user to manually enter a website and check for matches elsewhere on the internet. This is a great tool, but it is limited in its power to catch content theft. A more enhanced service is ScrapeSentry. It helps website owners put methods in place that can prevent content theft from happening in the first place.
When ScrapeSentry detects harvested content, the website owner can be notified of the issue. It is then up to the website owner to address the stolen content. This is often a simple task. By simply contacting the offending site, many owners have found a solution to the content theft issue. Rather than risk facing criminal action, most site owners will simply take down the content in question. While ScrapeSentry may not take down the illegal content for you, it can certainly assist you in the process of creating a better and more secure website.
Web scraping can have a very damaging effect on a website. If your content is scraped and placed elsewhere on the internet, you may lose a lot of visitors and a lot of revenue. Even if your website isn’t designed to make money, it’s still frustrating to have your hard work taken without your permission. In order to keep your content safe, it’s important to understand what web scraping is and to utilize tools that can stop it.