Support » Fixing WordPress » Why is hootsuite in URLs category/cat1/page/5/?platform=hootsuite&page=23

  • I’m looking in webmaster tools at onsite linking. There are a lot of of URLs with hootsuite in them, does anyone know what that is about?

    Also I’m seeing lots of URLs like this..

    Is that normal?

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  • Moderator bcworkz


    You are looking at Google Search Console link data for your site? Are the links internal or external? If internal, determine the source and correct. If external, and if the source appears to be scammy, you can disavow links if you think they are detrimental to your page ranks:

    The links probably have nothing to do with hootsuite, the name is likely spoofed. The inappropriate ?page=50 stuff could simply be someone’s broken crawler script.

    Hello bcworkz, thanks for the reply. They are internal links, or rather pages that are seen by google webmaster tools when I click on coverage and it shows all known pages.

    So google is seeing them as pages, do you know of a plugin that can stop people from creating these fake pages that are seen by google?

    Moderator bcworkz


    Re: internal vs. external. I don’t mean if the links themselves are internal, I meant if the referrer of the links is from within your site or external to it. Each kind of link is separated out in the “Links” section of Search Console. By now I’m pretty sure you mean external referrers, but be sure these links do not have internal referrers or you have a very different problem.

    If you click on any given page in the links section, you get a list of referring sites. If the sites listed for these bogus links are just a few low quality sites, I suggest you use the disavow method I linked to earlier.

    You cannot stop someone from creating bogus links on their own site. You could try blocking such links so when Googlebot tries to follow such links, it is blocked and Google will eventually stop indexing them. It will take a while, but this will eventually work.

    There may be a plugin that helps you block problem links like this, but I’m not aware of any, perhaps one of the security plugins has such a feature? You could create your own .htaccess rules to block such links. For example:

    <IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
     RewriteEngine On
     RewriteBase /
     RewriteCond %{QUERY_STRING} platform= [NC,OR]
     RewriteCond %{QUERY_STRING} page= [NC]
     RewriteRule .* - [F]

    This returns a 403 forbidden error for any query string containing “platform=” or “page=”. Be sure to keep a backup file to revert to in case your changes cause an error. There is a real concern the “page=” restriction could break some site functionality, now or in the future. Do some testing to be sure such a rule will work on your site.

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