Google filtering some searches



It caught me by surprise at first. I had done a search and got the following…

“We’re sorry…

… but we can’t process your request right now. A computer virus or spyware application is sending us automated requests, and it appears that your computer or network has been infected.

We’ll restore your access as quickly as possible, so try again soon. In the meantime, you might want to run a virus checker or spyware remover to make sure that your computer is free of viruses and other spurious software.

We apologize for the inconvenience, and hope we’ll see you again on Google. ”

Wow – that’s strange. Thinking through the linux system here and in the back room, no windows machine on the network. Unless one of my linux boxes is compromised there’s no way a virus is doing automated searches from here. So I experimented a bit. Most of the searches being blocked were combinations of site:domainname.com and inurl:searchstring

Truth be told I was searching my own website to see if Google had yet indexed any posts from 2005/08/, so my search was site:averyjparker.com inurl:2005/08 usually on the second page I was getting the above message. I wrote it off thinking, maybe this IP block has something that has got it flagged by google. So the next morning I ran into it again and started searching.

As far back as January this behaviour has been noticed. There was a virus using google to scan for vulnerable sites (phpBB sites), in response Google started limiting some of the volume of results of certain advanced searches.

It seems as though (I use firefox), I get the message with ANY inurl:term search in the quick search bar, but if I pull up the Google Page and then search the message doesn’t show up until I advance in the search results. (In my case, page 2). What this meant for me is instead of searching for site:averyjparker.com inurl:2005/08 and then browsing through the results, I had to add a specific date, inurl:2005/08/05 for instance.

It’s interesting to see them trying to protect people from “google hackers”, but it is very frustrating to see just one page of results for some of my searches of my own site to see what’s indexed. I think a better solution would be for people to take responsibility for fixing what’s on their own server. Just because you can’t get it in a Google search doesn’t mean it’s not a problem. Here’s another view on this

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