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Major Overhaul Project (Security Notice)

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puravida's picture
puravida
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Joined: 09/01/2007
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You did not have any referrers listed. See this post for details: Lock to Account Enforced

I have added the referrer for your main site and it should be working now.

gmsstow
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Joined: 02/25/2011
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still no go my friend....try http://directory.marketinglistinfo.com

i had the referrer listed initially, then deleted, deciding to come back, hmmm

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puravida
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There is no mention of shrinktheweb in your source, so all that I can think is that you are using a script to make the request (i.e. for caching locally, perhaps?) and that means you must put in the IP of your server. As a courtesy, I figured out your server IP and added that but your homepage still looks the same.

Since there is no mention of shrinktheweb.com in your source code, that would suggest a problem on your side.

gmsstow
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Joined: 02/25/2011
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yes, i had noticed the same thing...no worries, thank you very much, its unbelievable you get back to people the way you do... thanks.

jansn
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Joined: 10/27/2009
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Hi - I've just checked that my cde is changed and it has, but three thumbnails I requested a couple of days ago have not turned up on my portfolio: http://janscottnelson.com/portfolio/ . I THINK all my settings are correct. I'd so apreciate any help you can give. Many thanks for the great service you provide. Smile

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puravida
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Most likely you are using a 3rd-party plugin/module, such as WP-Portfolio, and that means you must enter your IP address into the "Allowed Referrers" list. Click this link for details on the "Allowed Referrers."

As a courtesy, I pinged your domain and then put your IP into your referrers list. Have a great day! Smile

jansn
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Joined: 10/27/2009
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Thank you SO much - you set a very high standard of service Smile

bjourne (not verified)

If you didn't think you could support free website screenshots, then you shouldn't have offered that service in the first place. Trying to force users to upgrade by crippling the free alternative is not friendly at all. A useful service turned into crap.

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g0dxilla
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Joined: 04/15/2008
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@bjourne

First off, we know we can so we do. We have been offering a reliable, high quality, free service for 3 years now and will continue to do so for years to come.

Second our decision to enforce Lock to Account and change the request method was not made lightly NOR is it an effort to force upgrades. We came to this decision after:

  • Numerous emails for users who's credentials had been stolen
  • A relentless wave of leechers who were signing up for thousands of free accounts
  • Countless interactions with web surfers who were being shown PagePix of one site then being directed to a malicious site

and after years of collecting data and months of research and evaluation we were able to determine that NONE of the users violating our ToS, leeching off the system with multiple accounts, and/or using it with malicious intent were PRO users. Which is why these new limitations only effect the non-PRO accounts.

We have been fighting this battle with leechers from the beginning so we can continue to offer this free service reliably. We have spent hundreds of hours coding various solutions prior to this, including:

  • Duplicate account detection by name, email, domain, etc.
  • Duplicate referrer detection referencing multiple accounts
  • Direct file access detection and prevention
  • Custom crawler attempting to detect malicious use
  • Custom auto-account banning scripts based on the above criteria
  • Custom direct IP banning scripts based on the above criteria
  • And so on... And so on... Ad nauseam

Finally, it is NOT our intention to "cripple the free service" nor our goal to "force upgrades". We have always been about providing a free service that helps smaller websites grow their traffic to the point where they can justify paying for our service. In fact, to compensate for no longer supporting API requests/caching from free accounts, we are doubling all user's fetch limits when we enforce the new request method. This will make it so the vast majority of our free users will NOT have to upgrade and, if you ARE one of the users that ends up needing to upgrade, our new PLUS offering is a very generous package that will provide and even higher quality of service for a very nominal fee. Quite simply put, for us to continue providing the same level of excellence we have for years now we MUST remediate these problems.

puravida's picture
puravida
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Phase 1 - Complete

Ok, it took an unexpected six(6) more months to get to this point but at least we're finally here. I am posting here to announce that Phase 1 of this project is completed. The "PLUS Account" upgrade was implemented and the "Preview Verification Page" (PVP) was launched in coordination with updates from the leading plugin authors. However, we have not yet "enforced" the PVP for "Free/Paid Account Level" users. That lock down will be announced in the not-too-distant future.

Phase 2 - Launch Initiated

The 2nd phase of this project, previously kept secret, is in regards to the new billing system and pricing model. Tonight, we have initiated the launch of those two new systems and will continue to work on it over the next few days. You may read more about that here:

http://www.shrinktheweb.com/content/billing-system-update-launch-initiated.html

Phase 3

Since phase 3 of this project is an on-going project in-and-of itself, I consider this "major security overhaul project" to be closed. The Phase 3 of this project is intended to add new features, lower costs, and improve the service in general.

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