Our search analytics show that the topics of a previous blog “Ripoff Report moves the ripoffreport.com website back to the United States” continues to be of interest. As there are some changes to report on where the Ripoff Report website is hosted, it seems like a good time for an update.
Currently the Ripoff Report website is hosted on a server in a large data center belonging to Softlayer, in Dallas, TX. That’s according to the information returned in a DNS lookup for the domain ripoffreport.com, which returns an IP address of 188.8.131.52. The server still appears to be under the management of anti-scraping and web security vendor Distil, Inc. , who are hosting sites for other clients on the same server (or cluster of servers.) The hosting move away from the Amazon cloud (see earlier blog) occurred some months ago and seems to have been made without noticeable disruption or downtime.
It should be noted that this kind of hosting move is fairly commonplace in the internet world. I would not and do not read anything into the change of hosting providers – in the sense that there is no evidence of any attempt to camouflage or obfuscate the location of the Ripoff Report website. This will be disappointing to anti-ROR types, who otherwise might be quick to jump on this as “evidence” of Ripoff Report “running and hiding” etc. etc.
According to twitter and blog posts from Ripoff Report editor Ed Magedson and other staffers, Ripoff Report continues to be plagued by organized attempts to copy content for reuse on other websites, hence the use of Distil’s technology, which is claimed to thwart, or at least, reduce the copying or scraping of content.
Whether this technology is fully effective remains to be seen. Like other “anti measures” (such as CAPTCHAs) the bad guys soon devise high and low tech work-arounds, some using the very low cost and abundant manual labor workforce in the emerging economies. And that is a topic for another upcoming blog we are currently working on.
An excellent article at CNN Money fully concurs with our own research: LinkedIn is a goldmine for social engineering and competitive intelligence, as well as outright fraud and ecrime. LinkedIn knows what is going on, but has chosen to follow the path of aggressive membership growth – allowing easy signups without robust identity validation.
A LinkedIn spokesperson commented on the CNN story with their standard response: “We recommend members connect only with people that they know and trust. All Internet users should of course be aware of the fact that there are bad guys out there who unfortunately resort to things like phishing attacks, and that people should use common sense and tools available to them to ensure that they don’t fall prey.”
That’s not good enough. We need them to do a LOT more. And quickly.
The full CNN article entitled “LinkedIn is a hacker’s dream tool” can be read here
Please add your comments on your experiences with LinkedIn fraud, phishers and fakes below.
After three years in this field I can say with a high degree of confidence that revenge is one of the primary reasons for a reputational attack.
Anything you say, do or is a known negative, may be used against you by someone seeking revenge. Even if their issue is completely unrelated to the negative details they may send to others or publish online.
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One can’t help but notice that on many of the blogs, comments and posts that appear online pertaining to Ed Magedson, the oft-maligned founder of the consumer complaints website Ripoff Report, statements are made (often vehemently) that Ed is a “wanted man” or “under Federal indictment.”
Based on the repetitive wording of the claims the writers seem to be repeating things that they must have read elsewhere online. Proof of these claims, or even links to pertinent court records seem elusive.
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You may not be aware that larger size versions of LinkedIn profile pictures are available – that’s only if the owner had originally uploaded a higher resolution version. LinkedIn automatically resizes the uploaded pictures to a uniform “thumbnail” size of 60 pixels x 60 pixels, but the original is also made available for anyone to view.
Here’s how to view yours or anyone’s:
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