Thousands of bloggers and webmasters have noticed a strange digital entity, “BuzzMyFx,” hijacking their content and adding itself into the website’s URL. A simple Google search doesn’t return much information about BuzzMyFx, so what is it?
BuzzMyFx is what’s known as a scraper site, a website that copies content from other websites and repurposes it to manipulate search engine rankings and collect advertising revenue.
BuzzMyFx, however, is a bit trickier than your standard content scraper. BuzzMyFx copies a website’s content and stores it on BuzzMyFx’s own server. It also redirects browsers by adding “BuzzMyFx.com” to a website’s URL (MyWebSite.com becomes MyWebSite.BuzzMyFx.com, for example). The content appears the same to the user, but all the code is changed so all links redirect to BuzzMyFx.
TechyDad, which had its content scraped by BuzzMyFx, notes that the scrape site also adds its own StatCounter and ad code to hijack advertising revenue from the original site.
Perhaps the worst news for bloggers out there is that by simply searching to see if BuzzMyFx is scraping a website actually alerts BuzzMyFx to start scraping.
Content scrapers are usually considered illegal for violating copyright law, but whoever is behind BuzzMyFx is taking care to constantly change its IP address. Its identity is also hidden from WHOIS, a service that finds who owns a domain name, but TechyDad was able to find that the BuzzMyFx domain name is registered with eNom and the website is hosted by CloudFare.com.
TechyDad has created a simple HTML page called “content-thief.html” that now appears on pages that BuzzMyFx steals. The blog also gives details on how other bloggers and webmasters can set up something similar to thwart the content scraper.
Has your website been affected by BuzzMyFx? Let us know in the comments.