Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Mallholland (a.k.a. wunderld, a.k.a. ASDA)

Now here is something weird - I found a shop named "Mallholland" on Google Product Search selling Acuvue. Clicking on the link brings you to ASDA. Unless you have JavaScript turned off (which I do by default for sites that I don't know - by using a FireFox add on called "NoScript"). In that case, what you see is that the Mallholland script goes to a page on wunderld.1sthost.org which automatically and quickly redirects you to ASDA.

Checking the whois record for 1sthost.org shows me that this is the hosting company called Bytehost Internet Ltd. from London. wunderld, one would assume, is simply an entity or a person that has an account at Bytehost.

Checking the source code from wunderld show me what they are up to - they "cheat" by hiding a TradeDoubler link in JavaScript, piece by piece...
a7="'htt", a8="p://p", a9="dt.t", a10="rade", a11="dou", a12="bler.", a13="co", a14="m/cli"
...and then assembles the pieces into a redirect. This, my friends, is a spam web page ;->

At a guess, neither TradeDoubler nor ASDA approve or know of this purposefully deceptive practice (affiliates are hard to police), so I will drop them both a line about it. Let's see if they are able to clean up their own act and get Malholland off the listings.

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