I wonder if you can help us? We're sincerely dedicated to supporting our ISACA, (ISC)2, Security and Risk Management community, but could use your help. It's not because we want to trick the system. Quite to the contrary, we take pride in two things:
We are not bots - You are not bots
Put another way, we provide real content and you read real content.
The fact that our relationship is recorded in website traffic is a small badge of friendship. We get no money and more importantly, you paid no price.
We share secure content, so when you want something you can trust us to just get it. Over 700 of you downloaded a PowerPoint Presentation in just this year alone.
Would you like to know how we manage this relationship, and how we make sure that none of you are BOTS? As security professionals, we take the time to know who you are, and this effort is a part of how we keep your information safe. There's no unknown third party. We start by securing ourselves.
Most EnterpriseGRC readers are individuals who found us on LinkedIn posts and were unhappy to learn we don't do presentation downloads on our site. (We don't want to manage a service of harvesting emails and adding or removing people to obnoxious email robots. Nothing against useful announcements, but we can't stand artificially generated emails.)
EnterpriseGRC Solutions is not a file share service. We don't do downloads because our primary job is to maintain an interesting and secure website, not to manage file distribution. We provide content on SlideShare. This is free and we don't require your credentials, We don't want them. If you really need us, we're listed in all sorts of goodness and universal phonebooks.
When businesses read our content we see that, and I'm likely to personally reach out and offer members in internal compliance and security the opportunity to join my network. We invite people to conferences and encourage them to also become writers and influencers. This costs nothing and generates wealth in relationships and knowledge. Sometimes we meet great people who later work for us or hire us.
We use the basic plan HubSpot to keep an eye on business readers. We also get an email from LinkedIn users. We monitor traffic using Alexa.com and will speak more on that down below. Alexa is now an Amazon company, and since it changed hands, they're less approachable than in the old days.
We keep an eye on who is reading. We can tell if the reader is a bot by the amount of time they spend on a page.
Example: If you look at this reader, although the location is Sudan, we can see the people on LinkedIn who work at this company and confirm they are in our community. We know this traffic is real. We will invite some of these people to our network. In some cases, invitations like this have become 20-year friendships. Sometimes we encourage a student to have the courage to post a white paper in the US.
Sometimes people do try to hack our site. Our threshold for going somewhere unwelcome or trying something unauthorized is "twice". You do this, you are a bot.
If you do suspicious things, we just block you.
And now, Alexa
Back in February, we launched a new website. We had to. Our old site was not at all secure. We'd drifted out of compliance by using unsustainable code in an old Joomla platform. :-(
We created new site and began new tracking. Guess what, our old site impacted the new site. Here's what a few days of bots looks like.
Our task was to remove all the old links, to examine unsavory sites pointing to our domain, and to verify every single element, every page, every script. And we did.
Over a thousand pages were removed and recreated from scratch. A code stamp on each validated page allowed us to reconcile traffic, crawlers, content, inbound and outbound links.
We also put Sitelock and SSL on the site.
Our traffic analysis began to show about 13% traffic classified as "bot" or not measured for traffic score.
With new found confidence we began posting like crazy, publishing every day, and building the company network.
That's when it happened. Alexa decided that you and we are bots. Alexa is one of my favorite tech startups of all time. Can you help us? We don't know how to get their attention, but if only we could, we'd have just this one message for a company we love.
Just cuz we work like bots doesn't mean we are bots.
We worked extremely hard to earn this 100% Alexa certified score. Now that we have it, we are heartbroken, yes, the heart is broken, to learn that Alexa has determined that more than a third of our great traffic is not real readers. They are wrong. We have faith that someone will look into this and make things right. We believe in you Alexa https://www.linkedin.com/company-beta/21433/.
Let's hammer the point a little further. Our visitors and page views have almost doubled since we went on our publishing campaign. Over 132 people got tired of viewing lengthy online training and asked to be given an offline version, and they got what they asked for.
So why has Alexa increased our declared spiders and bots to 32% and erased all this increase, causing our US and other ranks to decline? Thoughts?
Perhaps we can use social engines to prove we are human.