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Craigslist captcha is back

Discussion in '3rd Party Leads and Automotive Classifieds Sites' started by yagoparamo, Oct 17, 2017.

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  1. yagoparamo

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    7C4F23C2-B826-4D45-BCDF-A2351F73DFE4.jpeg Craigslist has installed a captcha security step upon log in their system.

    This means that postings via their automated system (API) will continue as normal but any other updates will not be possible to automate such as deleting or updating vehicles.

    Your cars will be posted as usual but they will not be deleted before the 30 day expiration date, prices will not update, and vehicles can no be inter-exchanged in the ad.

    Additionally non-API areas can no longer be automated.

    I believe that CL added this feature to stop dealers from updating sold cars with unsold ones and skipping paying for another ad.

    We are adding a few disclaimers in the ads for the next batches of postings:

    “Dear Customer;

    Craigslist maintains their ads live for 30 days, we strongly recommend contacting the dealer for vehicle availability.

    Please contact dealer for latest pricing information.”

    In my opinion this is not good or bad since every dealer has to play with the same rules, it is annoying more than anything since some customers will undoubtedly contact us about cars we have already sold. However and on a positive note, this encourages the customer to contact us about pricing and availability, which is a good thing for a well trained sales staff.

    We will keep you posted as the system develops and CL continues to make changes.
     
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  3. AdamMurray

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    I saw you posted this on LinkedIn and immediately sent an email to our CL vendor. They replied that they have a "technical way" to get through Captcha's and our listings would update as usual.

    Thoughts?
     
  4. yagoparamo

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    @AdamMurray@AdamMurray

    If you simply Google something like “captcha break service” etc you will find plenty of companies that offer the service.

    But there are also plenty of successful lawsuits agains companies that use these systems.

    There is a way to even hijack the cookies and let the system think that you resolved the caltcha.

    My concers are that these tend to be temporary solutions, the captcha systems adapt. An easy way is by blocking IPs.

    My biggest concern is that you are now breaking thru a security system which, easy or not, it illegal meaning CL could potentially block your account but much worse come after you.


    Remember that everything done in CL is under your account and to claim that you paid a company to do it doesn’t exempt you from the liability.

    I think the reasons for this is either protection from DOS attacks, to slow down server updates that may be hindering their system performance, or to stop dealers form reusing ads.

    I’m hoping that they provide a way to circumvent this via their API.
     
  5. Alexander Lau

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    It will be up to the major 'inventory to CL' vendors to adapt. You're probably right, it's dealers that don't want to have to pay for another entry or some 3rd party is doing it for them.
     
  6. yagoparamo

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    @Alexander Lau@Alexander Lau

    Adapting is not the issue, the tech barrier is low, the cost/risk equation is the issue.

    There is a cost to implementing a captcha bypass, and there is a risk that CL added this to minimize server overload and that they ban certain accounts.
     
  7. Alexander Lau

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    Your point is moot dude, if a dealer or 3rd party takes the risk, so what it's on them. There's costs to everything. LOL!
     
  8. yagoparamo

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    @Alexander Lau@Alexander Lau

    That’s because you don’t understand how CL works.

    Anything the 3rd party does is on the dealer’s account, so if CL blocks their account—which they will do no questions asked no explanations given if they feel like it—thab is it. To have an account with CL you need a tax ID number so it is not as simple to lose it and get another one.

    Worst case scenario, if CL decides that you are costing them system performance or abusing their servers—they will sue you as they have already done regardless of your size (don’t think they don’t see dealers as a possible pay day).

    You are not working with Cars.com who would never block a dealer, or Autotrader who would never sue them because they try to work their contract terms, CL acts however is easier for them to act with total disregard of who you are.

    So all I’m saying is that careful what you ask of your vendor because you nay end up paying for the consequences.
     
  9. Alexander Lau

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    Ha ha... I understand it quite well, you're making assumptions about my understanding of a 3rd party classified ads site?

    I completely understand that they could put a banhammer on an account or domain. They aren't going to sue dealerships, they are just going to shut them down. How many dealers are truly abusing this, in the first place? Dude, seriously... laughable. Do you have any data to suggest how many dealers are taking advantage of CL? There's risks in everything and if a 3rd party vendor happens to be abusing CL on a dealer's behalf, well take legal action against them. Very simple.
     
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  10. yagoparamo

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    No, there is not a risk to everything and even if there is it is my job as a vendor to minimize it.

    I’m going to assume again, by what you write that if you get sued you simple just sue the vendor, “simple” as you say, that you have never been involved on a lawsuit. I will always take extreme steps to ensure that my clients don’t end up on legal litigation specially for breaking into another company’s system.
     
  11. Alexander Lau

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    There absolutely is a risk to everything. Hiring an individual that might risk this, hiring an agency or 3rd party vendor that might risk it.

    Surely, it might be your job to hold your wares accountable and good on you Yago, but let's not act like risk fails to exist. Any vendor that "risks" a dealer's used car lead livelihood at CL isn't worth using (so kudos to you). Most contracts stipulate what a vendor is held responsible for and if it isn't then that vendor is slimy or the dealer is failing to pay close attention. Sounds like you have some experience with being sued, with that much knowledge of litigation. Maybe your post will wake them up, but I doubt it. I've never been involved in a lawsuit, predominantly because I don't take these "risks."

    Again, what data do you have that suggests this is happening? It seems like you were assuming the reasoning behind the reinsertion of captcha.
     

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