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    Strange Attack on WordPress Site

    There is a strange attack taking place against one of my WordPress sites. This has been going on for months and is becoming annoying.

    Someone has set up dozens of blogs attacking various Paintball sites.

    The attack works like this. There is usually a genuine article about paintball on each blog that uses contextual links. Throughout the text of the article there are nonsense phrases in hyperlink text embedded in the content that link to various paintball sites. There is always one contextual link with a valid paintball phrase that points to the paintball site that I think is behind the attack. I have threatened the owner of that site that I will report their site to Google if they do not cease their attack, but the attacks persist. The number of attacking sites is getting overwhelming. I suspect that hundreds of blog pages have been set up with this attack.

    The nonsense phrases in the hyperlink text are things like "with envy", "great oaks from little acorns grow", "full of vinegar", "grow, dam'it", "go out on a limb", "full of piss and vinegar", "if it walks like a duck", etc. I have collected over 110 trackbacks from web pages with these types of embedded links.

    They are not just attacking my site, but also several other paintball sites. There are usually 3 or 4 nonsense links on each blog posting and one valid link that always points to the same paintball site. I think they are trying to dilute the number of effective keywords that represent each of their competitors' sites by flooding them with unrelated keyword links in order to dilute and drive down the rankings for the paintball-related keywords--if that is possible.

    I'm looking for a way to redirect all traffic from these links back to the attacking site's home page using a 301 redirect or simply block all traffic from these sites. Ideally, I would like this to work for search engine spiders, as well, if I could effectively redirect the attack to the attacking site. A PHP referer variable could be used. I probably will put a redirect like this in place. However, I don't think this will always work for search engine spiders due to their tendency to collect and store links and then check them out later.

    Has anyone seen this attack before?

    Does anyone have any good ideas as to how to effectively deal with this attack?
    Last edited by TopDogger; 1 August, 2011 at 16:38 PM.
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin

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