How To Find And Remove Stolen Content In WordPress (5 Ways)
Are you looking for a way to find and remove stolen content in WordPress?
You worked hard on your website, but now your content has been stolen, published, and traffic is being stolen from your brand.
In this article, we are going to show you how to find and remove stolen content in WordPress, whether it is a single post or your entire website has been copied.
How and why is website content stolen?
A widely used method of content stealing is by scraping blog content. This is where content is pulled from your website, usually through your RSS feed, and republished on another website.
Sometimes your content is simply copied and pasted straight to another website, including your formatting, images, videos, and more.
In other cases, your content will be republished with attribution and a link back to your website, but without your permission. While this can help your SEO, you may just want to have your original content hosted on your website.
Usually the main motivation for content theft is to take advantage of your hard work.
Theft of your content is a stressful experience that unfortunately many WordPress website owners experience.
Just know that you are not alone and it is a problem that can be fixed.
Here are the 5 most common methods to find and remove stolen content in WordPress.
1. Set up automatic notifications of content theft
Sometimes your loyal visitors will alert you that your content has been stolen, or they may have seen it elsewhere on the internet.
Fortunately, you don’t have to wait for a helpful reader to notify you.
Google Alerts is widely used for brand name notifications. You fill in your website name and receive email notifications when someone mentions you online.
However, the same feature can be used to alert you to content that is being used without your permission.
Just navigate to Google Alerts. Next, enter your website name or url, or use part of your article.
For example, if you end every blog post with the same CTA, you can receive notifications as soon as it appears online.
Then select the ‘Sources’. Select “Blogs” and “Web” from the drop-down list. Then click on “Create Alert”.
Now you will receive an email when your content appears on the web or when your website is mentioned.
2. Manually searching for stolen content
Copyscape is a plagiarism checking tool that can also be used to find stolen content that has been published elsewhere on the Internet.
All you have to do is navigate to Copyscape and enter your website’s url. You can also enter a page or post URL to see if any of your blog posts or website pages have been copied and stolen.
The free version of the tool gives you the top 10 results that should be enough for smaller WordPress blogs.
If you have a larger website or want results of every single mention of your copied text, you’ll need to upgrade to the premium version.
The paid version of the tool lets you review up to 10,000 pages with a single click. If you have a lot of content published on your WordPress website, this can be very useful.
Another manual tool you can use is grammar. Grammar is a popular online grammar checker tool.
The premium version of Grammarly has an integrated plagiarism checker. You can copy and paste your content into the tool. A scan is then run to see if any matches appear online.
3. Contact the relevant host or registrar
So you’ve found stolen content, now what?
The easiest way to remove stolen content is to file a DMCA complaint against the website.
If it’s a spam website or a website that is removing your content from your RSS feed, it can usually be difficult to find contact information.
However, you can use the IsItWP lookup tool to find out where the domain and website are hosted.
Simply enter the domain your stolen content was posted on and hit “Analyze Website”.
The tool pulls out all the information available, including the web hosting company and registrar.
You will notice the host and registrar appear even if the website is not using WordPress. You can contact the host and registrar directly to try to remove the website.
Since content stealing is an illegal activity, web hosting companies don’t want to host websites that are against the law.
Most reputable web hosting companies take DMCA requests seriously and will work with you to resolve the situation, including removing the pages that violate this policy.
4. Send a takedown notice to Google
Another way to get rid of stolen content is to contact Google directly.
You need to be careful with this method as it requires a lot of evidence. Generating incorrect reports can cause problems with your account.
There are several ways to file a DMCA complaint with Google. However, we recommend using the complaint in the Google Search Console.
First of all, your website must be linked to the Google Search Console. If you haven’t already, check out our guide on adding your WordPress site to the Google Search Console.
You can then use the copyright removal tool in Google Search Console.
Just click on “Create New Notice”.
This will bring up a screen for you to enter all the relevant information, including your contact information, the posts that were stolen, and the location of the stolen material.
The more detailed the information you can provide, the better the chances that the website in question will be removed.
If you need more information about your complaint, you can use a tool like Wayback Machine.
This tool takes snapshots of your website at different times.
So you can compare the date you published the article with the particular website that later stole your content.
5. Use an all-in-one scanner and takedown tool
You can also use the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) tool to find duplicate content on the web.
Just enter your url into the tool and it will search the web for websites that have stolen your content.
Once you’ve found a website that has plagiarized or stolen your content, you can click “Start Managed Takedown” to begin the opt-out process.
Note that the results are not always stolen content. Sometimes it’s infographics, backlinks, unlinked brand names, and more.
The detection and deactivation process is similar to the tools mentioned above. However, you don’t have to use multiple tools; you can do it all in one place.
DMCA offers premium tools and templates for $ 10 per month. You can also purchase a full-service takedown for $ 199, where the team of experts will remove your stolen content for you.
Final thoughts on dealing with content theft
Content theft is a real problem that every website owner deals with. Unfortunately, the bigger your website gets, the more people will copy you.
Some perform blatant content theft using automated content scraping tools, while others take inspiration from your content and paraphrase.
As a website owner, it is extremely frustrating when your content is stolen. We deal regularly with WPBeginner. The automated bot sites are simple enough to get rid of DMCA complaints.
However, since we are the largest WordPress resource site, many other WordPress bloggers, theme companies, and even some hosting companies routinely copy our headline word for word. You can rewrite the content to make it unique, but we know that inspiration comes from our articles.
We take this imitation as a form of flattery and it further confirms that we are still on the right track.
When you have a competitor who always copies ideas of yours but isn’t an obvious copy, there’s not much you can do about it. Don’t let this get you down; keep focusing on your mission to serve your audience.
We hoped this article helped you find and remove stolen content in WordPress. You may also want to read our guide to preventing image theft in WordPress and learn how to trademark and copyright your blog name and logo.
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