Re: how to stop image hotlinking and get rid of spam backlinks

how to stop image hotlinking and get rid of spam backlinks

2 0 3

We have a Shopify theme Minimal. We are getting spam backlinks for our Shopify website from k.html pages, which are pointing to Shopify image web pages. We have disavowed that domain to avoid getting a Google penalty.


But late now, more spammed backlinks are been generated from the same k.html ghosted pages. Is there any way to permanently stop getting such spam backlinks? Could anyone help us with how we will be able to know from where and what might be the reason to get such spam backlinks?


Also, Does Shopify offer a simple way to stop image hotlinking?

Replies 8 (8)

1 0 0

my sites are also victims of these links ending in -k.html 

Shopify Partner
3 0 0

we have the same spam backlinks issue with one of our websites.

Shopify Partner
24 1 12

Same here!

1 0 0

same issue, any good solutions or this is never ending game of black SEO tactics ? or just monitoring and adding to disavowed file ?

Shopify Staff
1060 136 171

Hi, there! Thank you all for sharing your experience. We understand that discovering a third party, that has used your store's URL to create backlinks to their own content, can be alarming. While we definitely appreciate that having these types of backlinks referencing your storefront is not ideal, it's good to know your site and account are not necessarily at risk or being harmed.


Since backlinks are not hosted on your website or in your Shopify account, our support can be somewhat restricted. That being said, the best way to help mitigate the effect of backlinks referencing your website is to use your SEO tool of choice to locate all the 'bad' backlinks, and then use Google's Disavow tool from there, as some of you have mentioned. Although we know that the presence of third party backlinks does not present a security concern, we also recommend conducting an account security best practice check in order to provide peace of mind.

Erin | Shopify 
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3 0 1

Hello Erin,

any news about this?


This seems to be a widespread issue I have encountered analysing many shoplift stores.
This spam backlinks through hot linking seems to be known tactic for some kind of scheme going on.

In effect it could mean a decrease in ranking, and therefore loss of revenue. Some people even describe it as a method of negative SEO attack.
The disavow tool is a possibility, but with such widespread use of this spammy backlinks, it would be better to have a solution by shoplift globally for all accounts.

17 2 1

But Google doesn't count image hotlinks as backlinks.


These scammers are not providing backlinks to our websites, they are putting bogus pages on sometimes legitimate websites, and somehow causing those pages to redirect to scam sites, **bleep** sites, any variety of unscrupulous website that is pretending to be a legitimate site.  Many of these scammer sites are selling counterfeit versions of an artists work, and hotlinking images from the artists site, or from sites like Pinterest.  They further deceive people by somehow using the artists pictures generated by Google to represent the first site (the one that redirects to the scam site) in search results.


And none of the deceitful websites actually have links that Google would recognize as backlinks to the victims website, because Google does not recognize image hotlinks as backlinks.  So is this still a job for the disavow file?


Google allows this scam system to thrive in search results.


Here is an example of image search results for my website which is how my customers USED TO find me:

be careful because almost 100% of the pages in these search results redirect to scam and malware websites.  Click on "See More" and there are pages and pages of them.


Someone please teach me how to stop these thieving scammers.



Shopify Partner
213 12 76

To my knowledge there is no proactive way to handle this.


The best solution to this is to take a reactive approach and disavow the backlinks coming to your store. Google allows you to request that specific URLs / Domains are not to be considered by their ranking algorithms.

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