A bot is a computer program used to automate specific tasks repeatedly on the internet. They simulate human behaviors, but they do it much faster and with fewer errors. That being said, bots can be pretty useful for one’s website. But not all of them. Some bots are programmed to take advantage of a website and harm it. That’s where bot management should come into play.
What is Bot Management?
In essence, bot management is a method of filtering which types of bots can connect to your web properties. It’s a website’s security system that lets the good bots in while keeping the unwanted ones out.
The bots that are granted access can be beneficial to your site in different ways. One example is web crawlers. They index the contents of a website so that it can be easily discovered when searching in Google or other search engines.
The unwanted ones are commonly referred to as malicious bots. That’s because they perform various malicious activities that have consequences ranging from minor nuisances to substantial loss of revenue.
How Is It Carried Out?
Bot management is made to execute two main processes. First is distinguishing human users from bots and second, identifying which bots are legitimate and which ones are malicious.
To give automatic access to bona fide bots, they can be added to a bot management system’s whitelist. This is the opposite of a blacklist and perhaps a more effective way of classifying good bots from bad bots.
To manage bots, there are three different approaches used.
Also known as fingerprinting, the static approach looks for header information and web requests from rogue bots to figure out who they are. It is promptly blocked if it detects any harmful conduct.
This is also called the behavioral-based approach because it assesses a potential user’s activity and compares that assessment to known patterns to confirm if the user is human or bot.
What Makes It Crucial?
Bot management is a must-have security measure for any website owner. That’s because more than half of website traffic comes from bots. And in that population, there’s a plentiful amount of them made for damaging websites and other crooked acts. Different types of malicious bots pose different threats to a site.
The following are examples of risks you can avoid if you implement bot management.
Spambots are the ones responsible for this type of mess. Spam content mostly involves scams and unwanted ads that link to another website, aiming for better search engine results.
Content scraping, also known as web scraping, is when bots download most or all the assets of a website. Then, they use the stolen data for another site without accrediting the original owner.
These kinds of attacks are what cause your website to crash or be unavailable. Denial-of-service (DoS) attacks interrupt your services by overloading the server. Another variant of this is distributed Denial-of-service (DDoS), which is trickier to invade from more than one system.
Denial of Inventory Attacks
The targets of these attacks are websites that sell products. The bots used in this attack fill their shopping carts with multiple items without ever closing the transaction. Consequently, a real buyer can’t make a purchase because the item will be out of stock.
How Are Malicious Bots Handled?
Getting rid of malicious bots can be done in several ways. When it’s confirmed that a harmful bot is trying to access your site, the most common option is to block it. However, bot management can also be a little playful.
One effective choice is to redirect the bot to a similar page but with false information. This secures your content as the bad guys beat around the bush. You can also make use of throttling. It’s a method that slows down the activities of a bot, which likely leads to the attacker’s surrender.
If you want your website to be successful, you must prioritize its security. Reduce risks, which nowadays are mostly malicious bots. Investing in bot management saves your site not only for the time being but also in the long run. Secure your site to secure your business.