phantom referrals

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    One bright point is at least the spam isn’t in the comments.Maybe I am missing the point somewhat but besides minor damage to the stats, (I had 2000 views last week and under 5% were these referrals), only we see the links and don’t have to click on them. I really would like to know if this is a new spam attack of some kind but I also say enjoy the extra hits they give us :)



    I am also getting a ton of this referrer spam — mostly from and,, etc. Like everyone else, it’s more of an annoyance than anything else as they clog up my referrer log, but only I see that. But I’d appreciate some confirmation that these referrals aren’t doing anything more malicious.



    The spammers are specifically targeting your referrer stats to try and crowd it with their sites. As far as spam pushes go, this one’s pretty tame, but it is annoying and it does make it harder for you to get good reads on your stats.

    There’s nothing to worry about; we’re on the case.


    Markel: many thanks.



    Yes, Markel. Thanks very much.



    I know that it seems tame but I’m just worried that if our sites are associated with these spam sites that might drive down our Google page rank, or worse Google might think that we are spam sites and take us off their search results entirely



    @thetpsreport has a good point. I’ve noticed over the past two weeks (since I started getting hit with these bogus referral links) a considerable drop in my google ranking.



    Blogspot blogs doing this can be reported to Google directly, by the way. Google may or may not do anything about them, but it IS against their terms of service.


    I’m not absolutely convinced these are necessarily tame, either. Cheekycici’s experiences with malware attacks are proof they’re not. And huge thanks for all your knowledgeable interventions, Cheekycici.
    Agree with thetpsreport and cheekycici about Google ranking: we’re being handicapped, and it is not just about our referrers/stats now being wildly inaccurate.
    Again, thanks for a helpful tip, Raincoaster: but Blogger takes forever to check out breaches. They should be onto this mob – nearly all blogspot items – by now. Will have a go just the same.



    ALL WordPress blogs, both and have taken a hit in google rankings lately, but I don’t know the cause.

    It’s possible this is some kind of spammer who’s getting paid to drive traffic to those sites, and it’s working: you see the link in your stats, you click on it, they’ve done their job. And yeah, the sites in question may or may not be benign.

    Looks from a quick glance at my stats that they’re sending hits to the HOME page of the blog. If this is your experience as well, then realize that your post hits are probably accurate; it’s just the hits on your main page which are not.


    You can check your google penalty here.Ii went from 0 to 3 in 2 weeks.



    If you went from 0 to 3, you didn’t get penalized.


    Oh. That sight says it is a slight penalty. Didn’t think it was google page rank.


    Anyway, seems the spammy referrers have been beaten into submission by the Automatic ropocops :)


    ROBOCOPS….damn typos :(


    I’m still getting spam referrers …



    @raincoaster has a good point: “It’s possible this is some kind of spammer who’s getting paid to drive traffic to those sites, and it’s working: you see the link in your stats, you click on it, they’ve done their job. And yeah, the sites in question may or may not be benign.”

    @noreligionblog: I’m still getting spam referrer links. Yesterday I didn’t have any, but today they’re back.

    I know the people of WP are hard at work trying to figure this one out, so I suppose all we can do is just continue to update as more information presents itself.

    Thanks to everyone for all the feedback and insight. It’s definitely frustrating.


    Hi fellow sufferers – I reported all the bogus blogspot referrers to Blogger yesterday. Latest incomers are all fake dot.coms, but numbers have definitely dropped – thanks WordPress Support!
    With you & raincoaster, cheekycici: around the time the referrer-log business began, StatCounter shows two visits from Iranian IPs who are known sources of spam pushes, etc. FTR = & The like can be reported/checked out at



    We’ve got loads, it’s driving us mad. If only we could mark the referrals as spam referrals and block them all – one of us used to use a CMS at work that allowed this.



    The number of phantom referrals per day seems to be going down but this morning one of them appears to have REPLACED a legitimate referral in the list in my stats. Is this possible or am I going crazy?

    Either way, these guys are really starting to annoy me. I know they will be bots, or kids, or even just someone looking to make some easy money, but it seems really dishonest, unimaginative and tedious – especially if they are preventing me from recognising genuine referrers.

    I can’t wait to get rid of them.

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