How Oxylabs delivers data scraping solutions pro-bono to help people hunt for bad actors

Data scraping solutions

When people hear the term data scraping, their first thought is often about how companies use this technology for competitive reasons – specifically to pull publicly-available data from millions of websites in order to remain more competitive for pricing or for market awareness. This could include monitoring a competitor’s inventory, especially in these times of supply chain malaise. But data scraping has other uses, too, and one of these is the act of partially “making people’s internet experience safer.

There is, sadly, a great deal of offensive material online. The internet, after all, is a technology with no filters other than those put up by individual operators. Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter, for example, all have rules about content, and they routinely ban offensive material, but even they cannot keep track of all of it, and they rely on users to bring issues to their attention. Patrolling for offensive material is made even more difficult when it comes to images, since they tend to slip through text-based filters.

Illegal content detection

Public data scraping solutions provider Oxylabs has contributed to the cleanup effort. As one example, described in more detail in a blog available on their website, they worked on a pro bono partnership with the Communications Regulatory Authority of Lithuania (RRT), after winning a hackathon that focused on automating illegal content detection such as child sexual abuse or pornography, specifically in the Lithuanian IP address space.

Their blend of web scraping technology and AI-driven recognition tools made the impossible now possible: to monitor most sites on the Lithuanian web, scanning thousands of pages and searching for potentially harmful images. Once located, the technology forwards those images to specialists to review. The Oxylabs-created tool reports the detected harmful images to a hotline that had, up until then, depended solely on voluntary reports. The tool allowed more proactivity in the process by monitoring the web in the background and making the reports constant. This means it does not depend too much on the changing habits and research styles of the volunteers.

This type of technology has great potential for the global internet, too. With a little add-on of AI it can be used for retailers and manufacturers to identify and track counterfeit goods and the companies that traffic in them.

Searching for insider risk

Such developments go a long way towards turning the tables on cybercriminals of all types. A great deal of cybersecurity is based on preventing attack and searching for insider risk. But with such an elusive and shapeless criminal element trafficking in data and stolen goods, it becomes necessary to proactively go out and search for the offending material with the same amount of energy and drive that is used in reactive searches and mitigation.

Data scraping has the capacity to search publicly visible websites. It is able to use that same level of persistence that spammers and other dark-side actors have always been using, which creates a force – a collection of bots constantly on the hunt for illegal material.

Data gathering solutions

In this way, the technologies made available by Oxylabs represent a vital new approach to cybersecurity overall, a proactive style of hunting, to complement the more traditional forensic style of fixing. Established in 2015, Oxylabs describes itself as a premium proxy and public web data acquisition solution provider, which enables its clients, companies of all sizes, to fully leverage the power of big data. Its tradition of constant innovation, backed up by a large patent portfolio, and a focus on ethics have allowed Oxylabs to become a global leader in the web data acquisition industry and forge close ties with dozens of Fortune Global 500 companies. In 2022, Oxylabs was named the fastest-growing public data gathering solutions company in Europe in the Financial Times’ FT 1000 list.

For more information about Oxylabs, you can visit them here.

By Steve Prentice

Alex Vakulov
Ransomware Database Targeting The scourge of ransomware is undoubtedly the most severe cyber security concern for home users and organizations these days. It revolves around taking important data hostage and demanding money, usually hard-to-trace cryptocurrency ...
Kelly Dyer
Achieving Data Security Compliance As individuals, we go through life sharing information about ourselves in every aspect of our daily existence. From credit checks for securing a loan, through to entire personal and family medical ...
Sofia Jaramillo
Augmented Reality in Architecture Augmented reality (AR) is a growing field of study and application in the world of architecture. This useful tool can help us visualize architectural designs by superimposing them onto real-world scenes ...
Harish Chauhan
Adopting a Multi-cloud Strategy Cloud has been in existence since 2006 when Amazon Web Service (AWS1) first announced its cloud services for enterprise customers. Two years later, Google launched App Engine, followed by Alibaba and ...
Drew Firmen
Here’s How to Make Sure Your Skills are Cloud Ready This year will be a period of meteoric growth for the cloud industry. Research from Gartner suggests that global spending on public cloud services in ...

PROXY SERVICES

  • Smartproxy

    Smartproxy

    Smartproxy is a rising star in the constantly growing proxy market. Smartproxy offers awarded customer service, impressive performance, and is serious about your anonymity (yes, cybersecurity matters). The latest features developed by Smartproxy are 30 minute long sticky sessions and Google Proxies. Rumor has it, the latter guarantee 100% success rate

  • Bright Data

    Bright Data

    Bright Data’s network is one of the most robust of its kind globally. Here are its stark advantages: Extremely stable connection for long sessions (99.99% uptime guaranteed). Free to integrate with our Proxy Manager which allows you to define custom rules for optimized results. Send unlimited concurrent requests increasing speed, cost-effectiveness, and overall efficiency.

  • Rsocks

    Rsocks

    RSocks team offers a huge amount of residential plans which were developed for plenty of tasks and, most importantly, has been proved to be quite efficient. Such variety has been created on purpose to let everyone choose a plan for a reasonable price, online, rotation and other parameters.

  • Storm Proxies

    Storm Proxies

    Storm Proxies' network is optimized for high performance and fast multi-threaded tools. You get unlimited bandwidth. No hidden costs, no limits on bandwidth. Try Storm Proxies 100% Risk Free. If you are not happy with the service email us within 24 hours of purchase and we will refund you.