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I have a site hosted on Godaddy. Recently, another site that I don't control has copied the look and feel of my site. They look exactly like my site, except the domains are different.. Godaddy's staff said there is nothing they can do to prevent that site cloning the look and feel of my site.

Is there anything I can do to stop another site from effectively cloning my site? How can I keep my customers from being duped by this?

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Oct 28 '12 at 12:37

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In short, what you're asking is impossible. Short of you looking up the contact information for that domain (through WHOIS), and explaining to the site administrator that you'd rather they not do that, there's no way for you to tell another site not to redirect to you. –  George Stocker Oct 28 '12 at 4:04
    
George Stocker,that strange domain is not redirecting to my site ,it is just point to my website .I mean ,it is acting as my domain .if it is redirected to my website ,after the redirecting ,all the following request are all my own domain urls ,right ? say : www.strange-domain.com ---> www.mydomain.com/account/myorders ,but now the problem is : that strange domain is acting exactly as my domain. when you go to www.strange-domain.com ,there is no redirecting happening ,you are just visiting a exactly the same website as my website ,except the domain.www.strange-domain.com/account-myorders –  NextStep Oct 28 '12 at 4:17
    
so I need you to change my question back as the pointing at issue ,not the redirecting issue :) –  NextStep Oct 28 '12 at 4:18
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Have they copied your site and hosted it in their own account, or are they just pointing the DNS for the domain to your site? You can test this by changing one thing on your site then seeing if the other site updates instantly. BTW it would be much easier if you told us the two sites in question. –  DisgruntledGoat Oct 28 '12 at 16:26

3 Answers 3

up vote 5 down vote accepted

There is no technical solution for a social problem of trying to build a website that looks like yours, because no matter how you make the website look, every color, every font, every text and every picture that can be downloaded and displayed by your visitors can also be downloaded and copied by the imposter. There may be other than technical solutions to this problem and you should get some legal advice if you are serious about it.

That having been said, I can suggest few things that would make it harder to more expensive to look exactly as your site:

  1. At Go Daddy you can purchase an SSL certicicate and you can set up DNSSEC extensions for your domain. It will make your site look clearly more legitimate than the fake site.

  2. You can use some commercial fonts on your website and contact the foundry that you bought them from if they are copied by the imposter. For example see Typekit by Adobe. See also Commercial foundries which allow @font-face embedding.

  3. You can buy some stock photography or other graphics to be used on your website and contact the company that you bought it from if they are copied by the imposter.

  4. You can have some part of your design being changed frequently to make it harder for the fake website to always look exactly the same.

  5. You can find some legal advice on how to successfully sue the imposter for violating your copyright or trademarks.

  6. And last but not least, you can actually inform your users about that problem. You can add a short but visible message to every page of your website advising visitors to watch out for the fake website with a link to more detailed explanation of the problem and ways to distinguish the genuine website from the fake one.

You didn't provide any actual links or say how exactly it is copied, or whether every change that you make to your website is instantly copied to the imposter website or not, so this is the most that I can recommend in those circumstances.

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I love the concept of use someone else sharks (lawyers) to solve my problems +1 (+1000 if I could) –  The Disintegrator Oct 31 '12 at 4:20

Funny, I host with GoDaddy and my site too was being mirrored live.

If this is the case for you (that another domain copies your code live), you can do two things to mess with them:

First, add this to your head section:

<script>
    if (window.location.hostname !== "yoursite.com") {
        alert("DANGER! LEAVE THIS SITE IMMEDIATELY. This domain is attempting to deceive you. Visit the true version at yoursite.com");
        window.location = "http://yoursite.com";
    }
</script>

Second

For good measure, I encrypted my HTML page. This way, if the person mirroring your site realizes you added the alert above, they can't just change "yoursite.com" to their own! Search the web for tools to encrypt HTML and JavaScript.

I suggest leaving GoDaddy. I have three other sites that get far more traffic, and I've never had this happen.

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I am sorry to hear that your site has been copied. If the duplicate site is registered or hosted with Go Daddy you can email us at abuse@GoDaddy.com with the full details of the issue and our Abuse team can investigate what is occurring. If the duplicate site is not registered or hosted with Go Daddy you will want to contact the registrar/host that they are using and see if they have any process in place for issues like this.

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