The content on my site is primarily PDFs. I would like to get more accurate information as to whether actual humans are accessing them. I thought to add a javascript click handler on the links that go to the PDFs, thinking that bots won't be able to physically click on them. Is this true?

Or, what other ways should I consider in order to determine actual humans are accessing my PDFs?

  • The way I combat this, and maybe your best bet, is to create an event recorded in Google Analytics and let them weed out the bots. It's not perfect, but it's a lot closer. Feb 26 at 17:47

1 Answer 1


This is false. People can write bots using python libraries such as Selenium which allows the bot to fully render a page (JS and all) and click all the onscreen elements.

They can also mimic keyboard inputs as well if you have forms or fields.

If you are wanting to prevent the downloads of your PDFs, I suggest you research captchas or some other way of properly identifying humans vs. bots.

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