Leading online news portal caught cheating on statistics

news.am screenshot

Armenia -- Screenshot of News.am website, 22Jul2010

News.am, a leading Armenian online news portal has apparently attempted to cheat in order to boost its website visitor statistics on Armenian website rating system Circle.am.

“On 20th of July, 2010 membership of NEWS.AM and ARMTODAY.INFO Web Sites in the Circle.Am Rating was temporary suspended. This was done to conduct investigation on the cheating suspicions,” Avetis Avagyan, the developer of Circle.am reported today on his blog.

In an attempt to formulate the cheat a little mildly, Avagyan has said that “hackers” penetrated into web server belonging to ARMTODAY.INFO and modified/added several files, “as a result of which, visitors coming to ARMTODAY.INFO website were downloading in the background (in 0-sized frame) different pages from NEWS.AM Web Site.”

cyrcle.am screenshot

Click to enlarge: screenshot of Circle.am rating system showing leaders in News and Media category, 22Jul2010

According to the Circle.am developer, this was resulting in extra (and artificial) traffic numbers recorded by the Circle.Am counter and was helping the statistics of News.am, which is struggling with Tert.am and A1plus.am to occupy the top slots in the website rating system’s “News, media and reference” category.

Incidentally, Avagyan fails to point out, that News.am and Armtoday.info are known to be managed by the same person – Armenika Kivirian and the cheat may have been planned and specifically set up by her in order to help News.am with boosting its statistics and beating A1plus.am and Tert.am to the top slot in the rating system.


2 thoughts on “Leading online news portal caught cheating on statistics

Comments are closed.