DMCA TakeDown Request: Yup, we got Scammed!
Not really a surprise, but yes, here at www.canuckseo.com we got scammed like millions of other sites too and we didn’t even know like most of same but were told by a good SEO friend/expert from Toronto.
Here’s the short email from Dev Basu, founder of www.poweredbysearch.com and a real friend indeed -
Hope all is well. It looks like someone ripped off your site and added spam content.
Have a look at http://girlsblackbook.com/tl/2-chainz-mp3-hctotk-no-lie/
So yes, I quickly clicked on that link and yup, it’s our own CanuckSEO site but not quite, eh! What this scam artist has done is to simply copy our home page code and images – then strip out our own SEO based content and add in their own spam/scam/affiliate links to try to gain some traction…sigh…what an idiot! Totally illegal in this case and yes, actionable too! Oh, and how’d Dev find same? Well as I link to his site under my BlogRoll area, in GWT he was seeing ‘weird’ links to his site from this scam/spam site…and let me know! BIG THANKS to Dev….muchly appreciated lad!
So…what does one do when you find out someone has stolen your own content for their use? That answer can be a long google list of hits, but the simple answe is you file what’s called a DMCA Takedown Request to the folks who can actually “do” something about same.
So who’s that you ask and how would you find out who to make that request to?
Start here at www.domaintools.com and plug in that domain and you’ll see what I saw yesterday…
As you can see what that WHOIS search does is to identify who owns and controls and hosts the offending site and I was able to identify each in just a minute.
The site is owned and controlled by a firm in Romania, called Woobicha under the name of a Brian Warner, and yes he does have a site that shows that they are a web design company, so I went to their site, and filled in a contact form that showed that someone there had to look at the offending site and make the same determination that I did that it was an unauthorized infringement of this site and take it down.
I also noted that the ADMIN email address of email@example.com was not a valid one either by checking online at this email validation site….no suprise there really either as scam/spam idiots try to protect whom they are I’d guess….sigh…and yes a google for that name did provide some leads…but I’m not able to positively make an ID so that was a dead-end for any takedown requests….sigh…
Have I heard back from Woobicha as the owners as yet? Nope.
Will I? Dunno…but that’s not the only thing you can do….you can actually use the US DMCA law to get same done…and if you’re wondering what the US DMCA law is, then it’s a notification to either a web hosting company or a search engine that they are either hosting or linking to copyright-infringing material. It provides them notice to remove the copyrighted works. Web hosts are required to remove or disable access to the material, while search engines have to stop linking to it.
So, a quick google for “dmca takedown requests” gets millions of hits, but page 1 has more than enough info you can find out exactly what you need to do here or here or here….just fill out a standardized email request with your own particulars and send same to the other WHOIS parties.
Who’s that, you ask? Well, the host company for sure….at www.hostmonster.com and I did that and got an immediate reply from their support person out in Utah and they simply stated that yup, I had to fill out that offical DMCA Takedown Request letter and send it to them, which is what I did yesterday, so that ones ongoing.
But there’s more too, eh….what I’m also hoping is that Google itself, when in receipt of the DMCA Takedown Request that I sent thru to them by using their own form here, will also honor the law and take down ANY indexing of that scam/spam/infringing site too….so that the whole exercise that this idiot went thru will be for naught! And yes, I’ve also asked for that same DMCA Takedown Request too from BING and Yahoo too….figuring that even those smaller use search engines should also punish the infringing site.
One more thing to remember is that the DMCA Takedown Request should work as the hosting site is in the US – but had it been here in Canada, that’s a different story, as we do NOT have to comply with such requests by law…our new Copyright Bill C-11 does allow for somewhat similar processes, but there is a ton of discussion here and here too on same….
So….now, we wait. Will my takedown requests be successful? Dunno…but yes, I’ll update here for sure!
I just heard back from the web firm over at Woobicha, and their email message is here –
And as you can tell it was news to them – either from a hole in their own security perhaps or at the Utah based web host….but when you click on that scam site link here’s what you get now –
THAT’s good news, eh! Nice to see….and nice to know that a simple request can work too, eh! Now…wonder what the hosting firm in Utah has to say…..Google