Another Google Analytics Spam Update

So it appears that one of the major targets is the “Language” attribute of your referrals. But, since they all refer to the same, fake, domain we can easily filter these out.

Normally, you’ll see things like en, en-us, or maybe (not set) but currently there are some being injected that make reference to a fake version of Google, using a non-standard “G” to trick you. You might not even see this text unless you have the “User > Language” data being shown on your referrals but it’s likely there. Once you’ve set up the filter you’ll see how many actual references there are when you “verify” it.

Here’s the abbreviated version of what to do:

  1. Go to your site on your Analytics account
  2. Navigate to the “Admin” tab
  3. Click on “Filters” in the “View” column on the far right
  4. Click “Add Filter”
  5. Make sure the “Create new Filter” radio button is ticked
  6. Name it something like “Spam Language Filter”
  7. Choose “Custom” under “Filter Type”
  8. Choose “Exclude”
  9. Choose “Language Settings” under “Audience/Users” in the “Filter Field” select
  10. Paste this into the “Filter Pattern” input ɢoogle (Note the strange looking “G”)
  11. Scroll down under “Filter Verification” and click “Verify this Filter”

If you have any references to the new referral spam in your referrals you’ll see it here and a count of how many times it appears. Click “Save” and that should fix the problem for now.

There are still many other types of referral spam out there and spammers will always be adding new methods to their bag of tricks so we have to be vigilant to stay on top of it. In the meantime, you can check for some of the more common forms with a tool I created to clean up referral spam in your analytics.

I’ll be steadily updating this snippet with the any spammy strings I receive: ɢoogle|o-o-8-o-o\.com|Vitaly|Trump|