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By | John Oates 23rd February 2007 08:02

Ebuyer caught pinching content from rival site

Naughty, very naughty

Online retailer Ebuyer has been caught copying content from a rival website.

We were sent several pages which contained identical words and images as the same product pages on Broadbandbuyer. Even worse this page (last para) on Ebuyer suggested customers should call Broadbandbuyer's pre-sales team if they wanted more information.

Not only that but they didn't even bother to copy the pictures across so anyone browsing the Ebuyer website was actually looking at images hosted on Broadbandbuyer's servers.

Giles Essame, technical director at Broadbandbuyer, told the Reg: "We noticed because our firewall was showing a constant link to to Ebuyer's IP address. So they were not only copying our content but they weren't even hosting it themselves. They had even copied our pages for stuff which we had removed from the site because we were getting too many pre-sales queries."

Essame said: ""Perhaps I should feel flattered that the likes of Ebuyer would want to copy our content layout for use on it’s own site… but ultimately I’m disappointed, particularly to have discovered that they’re even using our bandwidth, which we pay for, to display the content to their own customers!"

Back in September of last year Ebuyer laid off its whole development team and its quality assurance team.

Mike Naylor, director of IT and marketing at Ebuyer, told us in a statement: "In the specific instance that you have highlighted it would appear that a member of our junior product management team has inadvertently obtained product information from an incorrect source. We apologise for this and have removed any reference made on the specific example given to the supplier.”

“We do, of course, monitor our website to ensure that all content is correct and properly authorised, but, as you will appreciate, individual errors can be missed on a site that carries information about such a large number of products. I therefore thank you for drawing this error to our attention, as a result of which we have re-inforced our message to the Product Management team that only content provided by suppliers and manufacturers should be replicated on our site to avoid a repeat of this situation."®

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