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Stop Adcash(.)com Referral Spam In Google Analytics

Referral spam messages have appeared online advertising suspicious third-party websites by using web links provided by legitimate ad-providing services such as Adcash(.)com have been reported to affect users. The web links being spammed are related to the reputable Adcash service that has nothing to do with the spam links advertised. Everyone who has come across referral spam containing Adcash(.)com web links featured in spammed messages should be aware that they may be dangerous. This is a big problem for Adcash staff as well, since the company is looking forward to eliminating such spammers that use their web links in the future.

Name Referral Spam using Adcash(.)com URLs
Type Referral Spam
Short Description The spam messages may be unhealthy for user PCs and devaluate Google Analytics data, making research based on it impossible.
Symptoms Users may witness slow PC, system freezes or famous retailer sites with different URLs. Furthermore, the sites affected may have their traffic data become corrupt.
Distribution Method Via Refferal Spamming software
Detection Tool Download Malware Removal Tool, to See If Your System Has Been Affected by Referral Spam using Adcash(.)com URLs
User Experience Join our forum to discuss Referral Spam using Adcash(.)com URLs.

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How Does Adcash(.)com URLs Spam Work

One way this particular spam method uses to spread is via spam bots. In general spam bots aim to drive hoax traffic to the web link being advertised. Examples for various spammed web links that redirect to third-party sites via Adcash may be:

  • www.adcash(.)com/2dh23inf32i2.html
  • http://222e91adcash(.)com

Such web links may lead to websites that might be looking forward to generating funds via pay-per-click schemes such as the adf(.)ly spam. The risks associated with such spam is that it may quickly corrupt the website’s statistics and be dangerous for the user who clicked on the link as well. The main dangers associated with this spam for users may be separated into two groups:

  • Infect users with different malware – Trojans, Ransomware, Worms, Rootkits, etc
  • Redirect the user to scamming sites that may resemble a reputable service or a prize contest and rope him/her into providing personal or financial data. This is typical for users who do not have a lot of experience with such situations.

Furthermore, the third parties that take advantage of legitimate Adcash(.)com advertising services may use different types of tracking technologies:

  • Targeting or Advertising cookies.
  • Analytical/Performance cookies.
  • Session cookies.
  • Persistent cookies.
  • Pixel tracking.

In general, referral spam containing Adcash(.)com URLs might use two types of spamming methods to spread and be effective:

Web Crawlers

Crawlers, also known as Spiders, have the potential to spread the spam on a global scale. This may be because the crawler is programmed to look for websites with different preset criteria. To put this in perspective imagine that the spider bot looks for websites that have traffic in the range 3000 to 10000 users per day and it is set to look for sites with no Captcha being present. The spam bot is set to spam automatically those sites with a pre-programmed messages and web links embedded in them. Even though it may devaluate the statistics on an affected website very rapidly, the spam bot is not this aggressive. It may back away after being warned, removed once or reported.

Ghost Referral Spam

Ghost Referral spam is also known as ghosts and ghost referrer spam and as its name suggests it aims to stay hidden on a website for as long as possible by using obfuscation techniques. Researchers focused primarily on Referral Spam have reported that Ghost Referrers use special software to take advantage of the free HTTP connection to be able to spam while not visiting the website itself. This type of spam “from a distance” may allow spammers using the legitimate Adcash(.)com advertising services to spread it to a way larger magnitude then they would be able to If the spam techniques were conventional.

Whether it is to drive traffic to a third-party site, to cause spikes and devaluate your GA statistics or to drive users to click on its web links for malicious purposes, referral spam is no good, and it should be regularly blocked. Unfortunately, cyber-criminals are always coming up with new domain names and methods to spam unsuspecting sites with suspicious URLs. It is a good practice to stay regularly up to date with the latest spam domains and check them very well.

Block Adcash(.)com Referral Spam Completely

To block referral spam that contains Adcash(.)com web links it is advisable to use unconventional spam blocking techniques. In the after-mentioned instructions we have provided several methods we believe may be sufficient to stop Adcash(.)com URLs spam from further spreading on your computer. However bear in mind that Adcash(.)com is a legitimate company that provides online advertising services and it is your own decision whether to block the main domain or not:

Method 1: Filtering Referral Spam using Adcash(.)com URLs Spam in Google Analytics:

Step 1: Click on the ‘Admin’ tab on your GA web page.
Step 2: Choose which ‘View’ is to be filtered and then click the ‘Filters’ button.
Step 3: Click on ‘New Filter’.
Step 4: Write a name, such as ‘Spam Referrals’.
Step 5: On Filter Type choose Custom Filter –>Exclude Filter –> Field: Campaign Source–> Filter Pattern. Then on the Pattern, enter the domain name – Referral Spam using Adcash(.)com URLs Step 6: Select Views to Apply Filter.
Step 7: Save the filter, by clicking on the ‘Save’ button.
You are done! Congratulations!

Also, make sure you check out these several methods to help you further block out this referrer spam from Google Analytics:

More Methods To Stop Spam Bots and Spiders In Google Analytics

We have also researched the following methods to remove this spam:

Method 2: Block Referral Spam using Adcash(.)com URLs from your server.

In case you have a server that is Apache HTTP Server, you may want to try the following commands to block Referral Spam using Adcash(.)com URLs domains in the .htaccess file:

RewriteEngine on

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*adcash web link \.com/ [NC,OR]

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*adcash web link \-for\-website\.com/ [NC,OR]

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*adcash web link \.biz/ [NC,OR]

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*adcash web link \-for\-website\.biz/ [NC,OR]

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*adcash web link \.net/ [NC,OR]

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^http://.*adcash web link \-for\-website\.net/ [NC,OR]

RewriteRule ^(.*)$ – [F,L]

Also here is a web link to some spam URLs being blacklisted from other servers:

Ultimate Referrer Blacklist by Perishablepress.com

Disclaimer: This type of domain blocking in Apache servers has not yet been tested and it should be done by experienced professionals. Backup is always recommended. Furhtermore, it is up to the user to decide whether or not to block the domain or no. Some domain names may be legitimate and restrict users access to share them and this should be taken into consideration as well. We remind you that Adcash.com is a legitimate service that provides advertisements to third-party web-sites. It is up to you to decide whether to block the URLs advertised or the whole domain.

Method 3 – Stop Referral Spam using Adcash(.)com URLs Via WordPress

There is a method outlined by security researchers online that uses WordPress plugins to block referrer spams from sites. There are many plugins that help deal with referrer spam, simply do a google search. We have currently seen one particular plugin reported to work, called WP-Ban, but bear in mind that you may find an equally good or better. WP-Ban has the ability to block users based on their IP address and other information such as the URL, for example.

Also, in case you feel like you may have clicked and been redirected to one of the domains mentioned in the spam message, and you believe your system may be compromised, you should scan your computer with a particular anti-malware tool. Downloading such software will also make sure your computer is safe against any future intrusions as well.

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Spy Hunter scanner will only detect the threat. If you want the threat to be automatically removed, you need to purchase the full version of the anti-malware tool.Find Out More About SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool / How to Uninstall SpyHunter

Vencislav Krustev

A network administrator and malware researcher at SensorsTechForum with passion for discovery of new shifts and innovations in cyber security. Strong believer in basic education of every user towards online safety.

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