Best practices for Website cloaking.

What is Website Cloaking?

Before we talk about how cloaking works, first we need to know what is website cloaking. Cloaking in SEO/PPC is a black hat technique where a website presents a different URL or content to users and another one to search crawlers (i.e. spiders or bots) to improve a website’s search engine rankings for certain keywords.

website cloaking

What are the different types of cloaking and how is it works

  1. User-Agent cloaking
  2. IP based cloaking
  3. JavaScript cloaking
  4. HTTP_REFERER cloaking
  5. HTTP Accept-language header cloaking
  6. Iframe based cloaking

1. User-Agent Cloaking

In computing, a user agent is any software, acting on behalf of a user, which “retrieves, renders and facilitates end-user interaction with Web content. A user agent is therefore a special kind of software agent. When a browser requests a website/URL it generates a User-Agent string to identify the server about the request.

In website cloaking these user agents are tricked to provide different URL’s/Content to the actual user vs bots.

2. IP-based cloaking

IP cloaking, simply put, is when a person hides their IP address. Since anything a person does online is linked to their IP address, the main benefit of IP cloaking, is people want to avoid being tracked and monitored. This is achieved by accessing the internet through a second computer called a proxy server. The proxy server acts as an internet gateway while their IP address remains hidden.

3. JavaScript cloaking

This happens when users with Javascript enabled browsers are served one version of the content while users who have JavaScript disabled (like search engines) are served another version of a website.

4. HTTP_REFERER cloaking

HTTP_REFERER is a string constructed by the browser to show the resource from where user click landed on your page. In this method, scripts are used to define content for headers.

5. HTTP Accept-language header cloaking

Similarly, HTTP_REFERER header scripts can manipulate content based on the language header generated by the browser header string.

6. Iframe based cloaking

This technique is the oldest one. Nowadays it is easily caught by spiders and makes your URL spammy. In this method, the iframe is used to generate content on the URL, and based on settings it regenerates content for bots.

Best Part of

The best part of cloaking is that it is not depending on only one factor. Trafficshield uses multiple conditions to determine whether the click came from the actual user or is it non-human generated.

We highly suggest to use cloaker to protect your URL’s and traffic.