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How to Prevent Theft of Your Ebooks

Part 2: Protecting Your Ebooks from Illegal Downloads
by Michael Hopkins

If you sell downloadable products (via ClickBank, PayPal, etc.), you need to be sure that no-one can access those products unless they've paid for them.

It's no secret that there are many people out there who will try to get to your download pages without paying for your product or, worse again, will make your download links available for free to others.

So what can you do to prevent this from happening?

Well, the best thing to do is get your hands on specialized software that's designed to protect your download page. One of the best available is SmartDD (a free one-product version is available) or, for an even simpler/quicker solution, Download Warrior.

However, if you don't want to use specialized software, here are a few tips that won't provide 100% protection, but will ensure that the majority of users will not be able to easily access and steal your products.


If you name your download page something like 'thankyou.html' or 'download.html' then it's a pretty simple process for the average hacker to locate your page and download your product. Give your download pages a complicated name that is neither easy to guess, easy to remember nor easy to recognize.


In keeping with point number 1, this is just a question of
making it more difficult for the average hacker to find your
download pages.

Let's say you're selling an ebook called "How to Make Your
Hamster Happy". Now, let's say you're selling it at this URL:

In this example, your sales page is contained in the directory
called 'happyhamster'.

Now, rather than store your download page in this same directory, you can make life more difficult for the hacker by creating sub-directories (or 'nested' directories) for your download page.

Just create a sub-directory inside 'happyhamster' called, for
example, 'srB45n' and another directory inside that one called
'trd12s' (or whatever) and then place your download page inside this directory. In this scenario, your download page would be contained at this, more hidden, address:

Another approach is to place your download page directory in a separate place altogether on your server - thus making it even
more difficult for a hacker to track it down.

(Continued below...)

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At the same time, it prevents unauthorized access to your download pages thus preventing people from stealing your products or giving your download link to others.

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If you don't have a page called 'index.htm' in the directory
that contains your download page, then your host server will
display a page listing the contents of that directory.

Here's an example of a directory that doesn't have an 'index.htm' page: http://bizzydays.com/example.

As you can see, the contents of the directory are there for all to see (and download).

Your 'index' page can be a regular page from your site or you
can make it re-direct the visitor somewhere else.

You can see this re-direction idea in action by visiting http://bizzydays.com/free.

As you can see, when you try to access that directory, you're immediately re-directed to the BizzyDays.com home page.

To create your own re-direct page, simply paste the following
HTML code into Windows Notepad (or your web-editing software) and save it as 'index.htm' or 'index.html'. Now upload it to the folder you wish to protect.

<meta HTTP-EQUIV="refresh" content="0;URL=FULL_ADDRESS _HERE">
<meta name="robots" content="noindex">

NOTE: Be sure to replace the URL with the address you want to re-direct the visitor to.


It's amazing how many download pages you'll find via the search engines if you put your mind to it. In fact, one search I just ran on Google turned up two download pages on the first page of results (albeit both from the same website).

To get around this, you need to ensure that the search engines do not include your download pages in their index.

To do this, just place the following snippet of code between the <head> and </head> tags at the top of your download page's HTML...

<meta name="robots" content="nofollow,noindex">


This one is pretty self-explanatory. If you've followed the
steps outlined above, then you've gone some way towards
protecting your digital products. It's not 100% protection,
however, which is why I recommend changing your download links regularly. This will help ensure that, if someone does manage to access your products, and has been leaving your download links on forums or whatever, then you'll be able to cut them off.


If someone is giving your ebook away for free, it's not a given
that everyone who downloads it will be as dishonest as the one giving it away. It's a good idea to place a prominent statement inside your ebook explaining that it's not a free ebook. Ask readers to contact you if they received the ebook for free explaining where they downloaded it. You might consider offering a small 'reward' for taking the time to contact you.

Just one final point... after you make the changes outlined
above, be sure to double-check everything is working okay.


Michael Hopkins is a Successful Web Marketer and Owner of BizzyDays Ebook Publications. Visit Now to Download Original Ebooks for Free at: http://www.bizzydays.com
This Article First Appeared in Michael's Newsletter, Ebook Times. To subscribe visit: http://www.ebooktimes.com

NOTE: You're free to republish this article on your website, in
your newsletter, in your e-book or in other publications
provided that you include the 'About the author' information (above)


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