Real estate startups may be culprits in ‘bad bot’ attacks

  • A study from Distil Networks found that 46 percent of overall website traffic is not from humans.
  • Real estate websites have seen a 300 percent jump in traffic from "bad bots." Distil says this may be due to data scraping from real estate startups.
  • According to Distil, an average of 48 percent of traffic for large real estate websites is made up of bad bots.

Future-Proof: Navigate Threats, Seize Opportunities at ICNY 2018 | Jan 22-26 at the Marriott Marquis, Times Square, New York

Running a website often takes years of time, effort and money. Real estate companies spend thousands, if not millions, in their quest to attract ever more eyeballs. But what if almost half of the "people" visiting a real estate site weren't people at all? And worse yet, what if a big share of those non-people were there to steal? That's what a new report from Web security company Distil Networks suggests. The company's third-annual "Bad Bot Landscape Report" found that 54 percent of overall website traffic in 2015 was human -- an increase from 2014. The rest is from computer programs called "bots." Some bots, such as search engines that crawl websites, are considered "good." Those made up 27 percent of site traffic last year, according to the report. But "bad" bots account for nearly a fifth of site traffic. Such bots can take up a big share of a site's bandwidth with illegitimate traffic, driving up infrastructure costs and making the site load more slowly. Or worse....