If you have spotted unusual referral traffic from ophcsale.xyz in your Google Analytics data you’ll want to block it before it permanently changes your account. Ophcsale.xyz is one of the latest domain names used to spam Google Analytics with fake referral traffic in order to promote services on semalt.com. Semalt is a self-proclaimed SEO website with services that have been linked to the unethical referrer spam method for many years.
According to whois information (https://www.whois.com/whois/ophcsale.xyz), ophcsale.xyz was created 021-10-05 along with other similar domain names used to promote Semalt. Furthermore, the owner of the domain name has chosen to keep their information private which is unethical for a legitimate “business” to do. Additionally, the domain name’s A record (https://viewdns.info/reverseip/?host=ASSISTORE.XYZ&t=1) shows that the IP address is shared with other websites, some of which are flagged for spamming the same online services. Most, if not all domain names on the same server forward to https://semalt.com/?ref=plant.
Is ophcsale.xyz dangerous?
Referrer spam is not particularly recognized as a cyber threat like malware. If your Google Analytics data was spammed it does not mean that your website has been infected with malware or is being targeted by anyone. Referrer spam campaigns typically target people at random and affect thousands of people simultaneously.
Even though referrer spam is not considered a security risk it is still a problem because it can alter Google Analytics data forever. For example, every visitor from ophcsale.xyz is a new and unique visitor according to Google Analytics; therefore, their average bounce rate is 0%, their average page sessions are 0, and their average session duration is 0:00. If this erroneous data is compiled over a long duration of time it will permanently modify a website’s genuine analytical data unless the source is blocked using a filter or recognized by Google as spam.
How to block ophcsale.xyz spam
Follow these instructions to block ophcsale.xyz referrer spam in Google Analytics by creating a filter:
- Open your Google Analytics account and go to Admin > Filters.
- Click the + ADD FILTER button.
- Create a Filter Name such as “ophcsale.xyz” or “Referrer Spam.”
- Select the Custom Filter Type.
- In Filter Field, find and select Campaign Source.
- In the Filter Pattern text box, add ophcsale.xyz and click the blue Save button on the bottom of the web page.
To add multiple domain names to the same filter you make a Filter Pattern similar to: “ophcsale.xyz | apkara.com | example\.com” (include the “|” between each URL)