How To Protect Your Website From Content Theft

Content theft is a bad thing. Many page operators who are longer in the market have already experienced this. By chance you can find his content on other websites again. Sometimes something rewritten, sometimes taken one to one. This raises the question of what you can do against the clutches of your own content.

First of all, you are definitely not alone with this problem. I stole my most successful content and spent one of my themes as my own work. I was able to fix both of these with a few “friendly” words in an e-mail.

However, one has to realize the harsh reality that is called: this is the Internet. Thus, there can be no absolute protection against the theft of intellectual property. You will never be able to completely prevent being robbed. Nevertheless, there are some things that make it harder for thieves.


Prevent content clutter

Prevention is always better than aftercare. So today I’ll give you some tips on how to often prevent a jam from your content.

1 – Ensure a clear copyright

Make it very clear what you want to allow in connection with your texts or not. Every visitor must be able to quickly find and view your copyright terms. A clear copyright might look like this:

Copyright [Your Full Name] and [Website Name], [Current Year]. Unauthorized use of content or parts of the content is not permitted without the written permission of the author. Excerpts, however, can be used, but only with a clear indication of the source. This must take place as follows: mention of the author, the website including a link to the original article.

Put your destination maybe in the sidebar, there it is very easy to grasp. However, you could also put a link to the copyright in the footer and forward the interested visitors to a specific page. Of course, you can prohibit any use, it depends entirely on you and your wishes.

You could also do the following:

2 – Use a Creative Commons license

Similar to the previous option, you can specify exactly what type of usage you want to allow and how to link back to you. Creative Commons is one of the most popular providers of free licenses in multiple versions. You also get a license generator on the organization’s website that you can use to designate your personal copyright license.

If you choose to use one of the Creative Commons licenses, then you should also place it in a prominent place. A link in the footer is enough. He could look like this, for example:

Copyright [Your Full Name] and [Website Name], [Current Year] – Link to License

Again, you have clearly stated what kind of use you want.

3 – Show only excerpts to your RSS feed

Content claptrap often takes place directly via the RSS feed. The thieves only have to configure their website once, so they always have their latest text on the page. Here it can be very helpful to display only excerpts.

However, this type of prevention can have juicy disadvantages. Many users still enjoy reading new content from blogs via the RSS feed. You could annoy these users if you only offer excerpts.

The solution: Yoast SEO

A solution could result from the use of Yoast SEO. With this SEO plugin, you can include custom copyright messages in the feeds. Thus, under each article of your content thieves would then be your copyright and you can thus have the entire feed delivered again.

4 – Use Google to find your content

Your content may already be on other websites without you being aware of it. Content theft is a fairly common affair, so use Google and other search engines to search for your copy. Copy an excerpt from one of your posts, put it in quotes for more accuracy, and start a search.

5 – Protect your pictures

Without your pictures and graphics, your content is worth half as much. Therefore you should protect your pictures against unauthorized use. A small entry in the .htaccess file ensures that your images on other blogs can not be linked from your server.

A use of the image material would only be possible if the images had been previously downloaded and inserted into the articles.

# Ban hotlinkingRewriteEngine on RewriteCond% {HTTP_REFERER}! ^ $ ## insert your domain !!!!!! RewriteCond% {HTTP_REFERER}! ^ Https: // (www \.) "Democraticpost \ .de (/.*)? $ [NC] RewriteRule \. (Jpg | jpeg | gif || png) $ - [F]

6 – Use Google Alerts

Google requires a Google Account for this service. In Settings, you can specify what types of content you care about. If they pop up then you will receive an email from Google.

7 – Use copyscape or plagiarism

Copyscape is a pretty useful online tool that helps you quickly find copies of your content online. The free function is generally sufficient, there is a paid version with significantly more features.

Plagiarism is another tool that helps you to determine if plagiarism of your articles exists on the net.

Content claw detected?

If all measures to prevent the theft of your intellectual property have not helped, then you have to respond. You have the following three options:

1 – Write the thief

Find the e-mail address of the content thief and write it down. Be gentle but determined and point out that you will take legal action if he does not immediately erase your content and discontinue his practices.

I have always succeeded with this method and did not need to take any further steps.

2 – Contact Google

You have the option to contact Google directly and request deletion of the duplicates from the index.

Google is responding to copyright complaints under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

  • Google:Requests for removal of content
  • Google:Remove content from Google
  • Google:The American Digital Millennium Copyright Act

If you host your blog at, you can contact Automattic. This is the company behind WordPress. That works thoughjustat andNoton the self-hosted version of

Automattic:Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) Notice

3 – Inform the thief’s hosting operator

If an e-mail to the thief of your content does not provide a solution, you still have the opportunity to write to the host of the online gangster and point it to the practices of his customer. This type of control has also proven to be effective. You can find the hoster easily with a Whois query of the domain in question.

  • Whois for .de domains
  • Whois for .com and .net domains


Content theft will happen again and again, but 100 percent effective protection does not exist. We can not stop it, but we can keep an eye on our painstakingly created content. And we can make it a bit harder for the thieves in the hope that they will then seek a lighter victim.